China speeds up 5G rollout and makes inroads into Europe

China appears to be accelerating 5G infrastructure development as the country seeks to climb out from the COVID-19 slump. According to telecom operators cited by Caixin (paywall), China’s 5G networks will be ready months ahead of schedule.

Rivals China Unicom and China Telecom partnered last September on 5G (paywall), and originally planned to finish building 100,000 network base stations in 47 Chinese cities by the end of June. Their new goal is to finish building 250,000 base stations by the end of September 2020, according to an announcement (in Chinese) on China Unicom’s website.

Huawei also made major moves yesterday in Europe, announcing a new series of 5G products and strategies in Spain. The Global Times reports that Huawei held a virtual launch in Barcelona of 5G foldable phone Mate Xs, starting at $2,712, two Wi-Fi 6+ enabled connectivity solutions, and a 5G tablet. Huawei also announced the AppGallery, which is an app store free of U.S. restrictions that may apply to Google’s app store. Huawei also launched a 5G program in London last week.

—Caroline Stetson