Symbol image: cell tower

Telecommunication in China

The development of telecommunications in China is roughly equivalent to the United States. Under the country code +86, there were a total of 1.91 billion connections in 2021. Among them were 1.73 billion mobile phones, which corresponds to an average of 1.2 per person. In the US, this figure is 1.1 mobile phones per person.

With about 20.60 million webhosts, China is below the world's average by population. At the end of 2020, 1.34 million of these, or about 6 percent, were secured with SSL or comparable encryption.

Back to overview: China

Development of telephone and internet connections

With an average download speed of 223.49 Mbit/second for fixed-network broadband internet, China ranks 2nd in an international comparison. The upload rate of only 38.48 Mbit/second was significantly lower (47th place).
In mobile internet, i.e., on tablets and smartphones, China comes 6th with a download speed of 112.22 Mbit/second. The upload speed of around 25 Mbit was enough for 4th place.

The Speedtest Global Index published regularly by Ookla is based on several million individual measurements in December 2022 from 178 countries.

The following diagrams show the development of the various telephone and internet connections as a percentage of the country's population. Values above 100 percent mean that, on average, every inhabitant has more than one connection.

Access to the internet in China from 1990 - 2021

Broadband internet in China 2000 - 2021

Symbol image: cell towerThe expansion of broadband internet in China is roughly on a par with the USA. Around 73 percent of all residents have access to the internet. Around 38 percent have their own fast internet connection, which is at least faster than the former ISDN (more than 256 kbit/s). All fixed connections via DSL, cable or satellite were counted here, but not those connected to the internet via mobile communications.

Landlines 1990 - 2021

Mobile phones 1990 - 2021

The increasing prevalence of cell phones and the simultaneous decline in landline phones clearly indicate a change in China. While the number of landlines has fallen significantly in recent years, the spread of cell phones has risen to 123 cell phone subscriptions per 100 people at last count. Such a clear shift does not occur in all countries, but the trend points in the same direction internationally.

All international calling codes

Distribution in 2021China
Broadband users535.79 m37.94 %127.03 m38.27 %
Landlines180.70 m12.79 %97.11 m29.26 %
Mobile cellulars1.73 bn122.68 %361.62 m108.96 %

Comparison: China / United StatesCountry comparison: China / United States of AmericaThe United States of America and China compared: demography, Economy, energy, languages and further dimensions.
United States of America: TelecommunicationTelecommunication in the United States of AmericaComparison of technological development and communication in the United States of America with the countries of the European Union
Sweden: Population growthPopulation growth in SwedenPopulation growth of the last 61 years in Sweden compared to the global average