China Telecom issues first 5G mobile phone SIM card


China Telecom, one of China's trio of telecommunications companies, has issued the country's first 5G mobile phone SIM card to Pan Shiyi, the chairman of office developer Soho China.

The move is a symbolic gesture as the SIM card cannot be put into use yet, but it reflects the cooperation between the two parties in the commercialization of the 5G network.

In January, China Telecom and Soho China reached an agreement whereby the former provides 5G network coverage to the latter's commercial properties in Beijing.

The telecommunications company has already started building 5G infrastructure in six real estates belonging to Soho China. Leeza Soho in Lize Financial Business District in Beijing's Fengtai District will become one of the first business properties to have 5G network coverage.

China Unicom and China Mobile have also revealed their 5G plans.

China Unicom said on its account on micro-blogging platform Weibo on Thursday that its 5G smartphone test machine has officially been delivered. Meanwhile China Mobile is focusing on the scale test of 5G terminals this year, with testing on a small scale launched in September and large scale in December.

According to the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, China will expedite the launch of 5G commercialization licenses, and the country will launch 5G terminal chips in the first half of 2019, and smartphone terminals for 5G in mid-year.