Motorola signed a $310 million deal with China Mobile Communications to provide services and equipment for the telecommunications company.
Under the terms of the one-year deal, Motorola will provide infrastructure in various markets for China Mobile's GSM/GPRS/EDGE networks. Additionally, it will supply services and equipment to help China Mobile transition its customers from 2G to 3G networks.
"As a longtime strategic partner of China Mobile, Motorola is proud to continue being a part of its growth," Mohammad Akhtar, VP of and general manager for Motorola China, said in a statement. "With the comprehensive end-to-end portfolio that covers 2G, 3G, and LTE, Motorola stands ready to support China Mobile in building a state-of-the-art network that maximizes investments and delivers the most appealing communications experiences to its end users at home and on the go."
The deal shows the increasing importance that China is playing in the mobile world, as its number of potential subscribers represents a strong growth market. For example, China Mobile is the world's largest carrier by number of subscribers with nearly 600 million customers, and there's still plenty of room for more potential customers.
The majority of these customers use entry-level phones, but these subscribers are increasing upgrading to handsets that can play multimedia files, surf the Web, and send e-mails on the go. Manufacturers like Apple have not been able to officially sell the iPhone in China yet, but estimates indicate there are more than 400,000 unlocked iPhones in the county, as well as multiple knock-offs.
The mobile broadband network could play a crucial role in the uptake of more sophisticated handsets, and China Mobile is busy expanding its TD-SCDMA 3G network to 28 cities. Although the technology is different than most 3G networks around the globe, companies like Nokia and Ericsson will adopt it in order to get at Chinese customers.
Today's mobile devices can give businesses powerful and productive services, but IT departments need to be able to lock down the data on the move. InformationWeek examined mobile security in an independent report, and it can be downloaded here (registration required).