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China Unicom hits a million 3G users, only sells 5,000 iPhones so far

Chris Ziegler

Nearly six months after large-scale trials kicked off, China Unicom -- the only carrier among China's nationals to be deploying HSPA -- has broken the magical million-subscriber mark that have made the leap to its "Wo" 3G network. If you're wondering whether the recent launch of the iPhone on Wo has contributed to that count, the answer is a definitive "no" -- amazingly, a mere 5,000 units have apparently been sold so far, likely due to the phone's prohibitive cost and the availability of unlocked devices and interesting alternatives. Be that as it may, the carrier seems convinced that the iPhone will contribute to Unicom's bottom line in the fourth quarter, countered by continued marketing and build-out costs for Wo. Networks aren't cheap -- particularly when you're dealing with a country the size (and population density) of China.

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