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China’s new entrant has two giant potential partners to back its 5G roll-out

Last year, the Chinese government allocated 5G spectrum to the three existing telcos, and also to state-owned cableco China Broadcasting Network (CBN), ushering in a new entrant at the start of the world’s biggest 5G build-out process. Now the newcomer has received government approval to start deploying its 5G network, in 16 cities initially. The surprise is that it will be using newly allocated 4.9 GHz spectrum for these first deployments, rather than the 700 MHz with which it was issued in June, and in which it has conducted trials. CBN says it plans to invest CNY250m ($35.8m) to deploy 5G service in the 16 cities, which include Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen. It will start offering services at some…

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