Taipei, Oct. 30 (CNA) Although Taiwan was behind some other Asian countries in launching 4G broadband services, the country has seen a rapid growth in the number of 4G users in recent months, which is set to reach 3 million by the end of the year, Chunghwa Telecom Co., Taiwan’s largest mobile operator, said Thursday.
The rapidly growing penetration rate can be seen as No. 1 in the world, surpassing that of South Korea when that country first introduced 4G services, said Chunghwa Telecom President Shih Mu-piao at a forum in Taipei.
As of Oct. 15, the number of 4G subscribers in Taiwan had reached 1.65 million, Shih said, citing official statistics compiled by the National Communications Commission. The number is expected to hit 3 million by year’s end, he added.
Shih made the remarks during a panel discussion at the forum, which was also attended by Minister of Science and Technology Simon Chang and other business representatives to discuss 4G development in Taiwan.
The 4G technology is the locomotive for all of the country’s industries and has led to the development of many applications, he said.
The technology also serves as an important medium for the Internet of Things (IoT), he added.
Taiwan is now working to increase the penetration rate of 4G as part of efforts to foster IoT development, he said.
According to Chunghwa Telecom, the 4G penetration rate could reach 13 percent by the end of this year, even though services in Taiwan only began in late May.
In South Korea, 4G broadband only had a penetration rate of between 2 percent and 3 percent in the first six months after it was launched in 2012, Chunghwa Telecom said recently.
(By Esme Jiang and Elaine Hou)