According to a report released by China Telecom on Monday, China's three major telecom operators, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, posted average daily profits of 420 million yuan in the first three quarters of 2013, slightly higher than last year. China Mobile maintained first place with a net profit of 91.5 billion yuan in the first three quarters; the combined profit of the other two operators accounted for only one third of China Mobile's.
But in a reverse of the previous trend, China Mobile saw its first net profit decline since the company went public – overall, profits were 1.9 percent down compared to the first three quarters of 2012.
In contrast, China Telecom's net profit increased by 17.1 percent to 14.7 billion yuan, while China Unicom's profit rose by 53 percent to 8.37 billion yuan.
In terms of 3G user numbers, China Mobile ranks first with 169.5 million users, followed by China Unicom (110 million) and China Telecom (96.48 million)
The report did not elaborate on the 4G plan of the three operators, but they have already started to invite public tenders for the equipment.