Just how much GSM does one billion US dollars buy you? Nineteen Chinese regions' worth, apparently. The deal to provide oodles and oodles of hardware to significantly beef up China's GSM network is so freaking big, in fact, that Chinese president Hu Jintao attended the signing ceremony in Sweden at the invitation of King Carl XVI Gustaf alongside Sweden's prime minister and the heads of Ericsson
and China Mobile
. The deal, which covers "core and radio network equipment, along with related technical support and services," is already rolling with deliveries in full swing -- so if you happen to reside in one of the 19 affected regions of the country, get ready for some more signal bars.