China Mobile Profit Increases 3.1% on Rise in 4G Subscribers

China Mobile Ltd.’s profit rose 3.1 percent for the first nine months of the year as the company’s expanded 4G network drew new subscribers.

Net income increased to 88.1 billion yuan ($13 billion), compared with 85.4 billion yuan a year ago, the company said in a statement on Thursday. Revenue gained 4.3 percent to 542.7 billion yuan.

China Mobile, which accounts for about 65 percent of the nation’s wireless users, increased its number of 4G subscribers by 168 million during the first three quarters. The gains come amid intensifying competition from China Telecom Corp. and China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd., which have introduced iPhone 7 subsidies to entice users.

China Mobile also added fixed broadband users in the period, after joining that market this year. It reached 74.2 million total users after adding 19.2 million during the period. The company had set a goal of attracting 15 million users this year, a target it reached as of August.

China Unicom’s profit dropped 81 percent in the first nine months of the year as costs rose, the company said Oct. 18 on a preliminary basis. The carrier is scheduled to report earnings Oct. 21. China Telecom is set to report on Oct. 28.

— With assistance by Jing Yang De Morel, and Siddharth Vikram Philip

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