(Nikkei BP Group)
(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)
| Twenty Percent of Taiwan Residents to Own Mobile Phones
December 15, 1998 (TAIPEI) -- Mobile phone companies in Taiwan forecast
that 20 percent of local residents will have mobile phones by the end
|The figure is generally expected to climb further to 35 percent in 1999,
which means that more than seven million people here will have mobile
phones by that time.
Private mobile phone companies debuted in the Taiwan market at the end
of 1997, when only seven percent of local residents were mobile phone
Amid concerns that the global economic slowdown will batter the local
telecom market, private mobile phone companies here remain optimistic,
and foresee three million new users in the upcoming year.
An executive with KG Telecommunications Co., Ltd. said forecasts often
lag behind real demand in mobile phone markets.
She pointed out that the number of new mobile phone users in Taiwan this
year is one to two times higher than the figures previously predicted,
and such underestimation also happened in many other countries.
The KG Telecom executive added that the expected three million new customers
for the local mobile phone market include both new users and users who
want to change service providers.
KG Telecom now has about 300,000 mobile phone customers.
Pacific Cellular Corp. expects mobile phone users to increase to 30-35
percent of the entire population in Taiwan.
The company, which already has one million customers, expects to solicit
another million users in 1999.
Far EastTone predicts a 22 percent mobile phone user rate for 1998, adding
that the figure may go as high as 25 percent.
By the end of 1999, the company estimated, the figure is expected to
rise to 30-35 percent.
State-run Chunghwa Telecom Co., Ltd., which already has 2.3 million customers,
is comparatively more conservative, forecasting only a 25 percent mobile
phone user rate for next year.
(Commercial Times, Taiwan)
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