Nokia, the telecommunications technology provider, and China Mobile, the largest mobile operator in China, have agreed on a deal worth Euro 1 billion for continued delivery of mobile, fixed, IP routing, optical transport, customer experience management technologies and operational support, as well as services expertise through the current year. This is a big deal for the struggling technology division of the Finnish telecom giant, and will help the company rebuild its once-dominant position in the market.
Do note that Nokia here isn’t the smartphone maker that is currently operating under the Nokia brand name. Nokia consumer smartphones are now made by HMD Global, a new company that holds the license for the Nokia brand name and works closely with Taiwan-based contract manufacturer Foxconn. While the consumer electronics business has been split, the telecommunications and network equipment divisions remain under the control of the original Nokia, which is based in Espoo, Finland.
Nokia will help China Mobile move to newer network infrastructure to cope with growing demand for services in the world’s largest mobile phone market, along with improving the level of connectivity driven by increasing demand for mobile data. As smartphone adoption increases, more and more users are utilizing mobile data, which has taken over from calls and messages as the primary traffic driver on mobile networks.
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The deal, which was signed at the recent Sino-German Economic Forum, is a continuation of an existing relationship between Nokia and China Mobile in developing, trialing and deploying new technologies critical for the delivery of mobile operator services. China Mobile has over 900 million subscribers and is the world’s largest mobile operator by subscriber volume, operating in China, Hong Kong, Pakistan and United Kingdom. The company is owned and operated by the Government of the People’s Republic of China.