Who are the world’s largest mobile network operators?

Telecoms

by Michael Moore| 27 June 2014

The run-down of the biggest players in the mobile space.

Mobile phones have quickly become a key part of our everyday lives, letting us communicate, listen to music, surf the Internet, and even fall in love. But often we forget about the companies who supply our networks - unless it's to complain about poor coverage or high bills. Mobile networks have become hugely profitable over the last few decades, so here is a run-down of the biggest players in the world...

10. China Telecom

With 185m subscribers, China Telecom is the country's third largest mobile provider, and is also China's largest fixed line provider. Founded in 2002, it also has the largest Wi-Fi network in China, rolling out over a million access points to more than 30,000 buildings and facilities in over 250 major Chinese cities.

9. VimpelCom

One of Europe's largest mobile providers, Netherlands-based VimpelCom has operations across the continent. With 209m current subscribers across 20 countries, the company enjoys particular success in Russia, where it was one of the first mobile carriers, and Italy with its Beeline and Wind brands respectively.

8. Orange

French operator Orange is best known in the UK for its EE network, formed with Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile brand, which currently offers the widest 4G network in the country. The company has 231.5m subscribers worldwide, with operations in Europe, Asia, North American and South America.

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