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Mobile internet in China - statistics & facts

With the turn in the 21st century, cellular phones gained immense popularity with China being a world leader in terms of the number of subscribers. As of 2019, the country ranked first in the number of smartphone subscribers which grossed over 850 million users leaving other large economies, such as India and the United States, behind by a wide margin.

In addition to that, the already ascending penetration rate of mobile internet users in China peaked at 99.3 percent in 2019. The mobile internet market volume also reflected a similar rising pattern with revenue estimates for 2020 climbing to over 1.6 trillion yuan. In terms of internet connection, the most widely opted for was the 4G subscription as of the year 2019.

China’s internet market had been steadily growing. Its annual revenue reached 5.4 trillion yuan in 2019 and market estimates projected double-digit growths until 2022. While back in 2010, the major proportion of mobile internet revenue was contributed by mobile value-added services, a growing trend emerged in the recent years to follow with a boom in mobile shopping.

Aside from online shopping, Chinese mobile phone owners primarily spent a large amount of time on instant messaging apps followed by online and short video apps. Teenage mobile internet users aged between 15 and 19 years had the highest number of web apps installed on their phones while older users progressively had fewer apps installed, as of 2019.

The Chinese mobile internet market has the potential to expand in other avenues, such as the online short videos, eSports streaming as well as mobile gaming. While the online short video market and eSports streaming platform revenues would project an upward trend in the years between 2018 and 2022, the mobile gaming segment’s annual revenue was expected to rise and then stabilize from 2021 onwards.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 23 most important statistics relating to "Mobile internet in China".


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