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Challenge of unified base station
Asfar as Shu Huaying was concerned, even if it were to establish the Steel TowerCompany, many realistic problems might still arise during the future practicaloperation. The core divergence is as follows: Considering the different demandsof the three major operators, how to achieve unified planning and unifiedcoverage? Firstly, the three major operators have different planning and stepsfor their own network coverage. For instance, CMCC desires to rapidlyfacilitate 4G station construction, while China Telecom and China Unicom wantto wait until LTE FDD is released. Then,confronted by the three shareholders, i.e. CMCC, China Telecom and China Unicom, whom should the basestation construction company listen to? Secondly, the three major operators owndifferent network systems and different spectrum resources, which lead todifferent base station coverage density and site locationss. Then, whose demandsshould be met in a prioritized manner? Additionally, base station constructioncosts are very high in, say, remote areas or monopolized sites such as metro.Then, how should base station companies without user development pressureconsider the issue of investment return? Where is the driving force? ShuHuaying pointed out that all of these were specific operation difficulties.Moreover, according to the news, based on the planning of the National BaseStation Company, the Company will merely take charge of construction andmaintenance of new base stations at the preliminary stage, and then it willtake over hardware resources such as existing base stations and steel towers ofthe three major operators. More difficulties will arise then. For example, willCMCC be willing to voluntarily contribute resources in hand? All of the threemajor operators are listed companies. How to check computation of suchlarge-scale base stations? Certainly, casting aside these detailed issues,joint construction and sharing is still a good scheme enabling eachparticipating party to save costs as well as the tendency in the future.Globally speaking, some operators in Europe and North America have reached allsorts of joint construction and sharing cooperation, e.g., Deutsche Telekom andOrange, Verizon and some operators in theAmerican suburb.From the point of view of operator insiders, the Steel Tower Company is atleast more acceptable than the hearsay company directly controlling allnetworks. “If basic networks of thethree major operators are entirely handed over to a third-party company, it is retrogresshistorically.” Ifthe base stations companies develop towards this direction in the future, itwill inevitably lead to more severe problems of monopoly and power rentseeking, which will be disastrous news for equipment manufacturers such as Ericsson,Huawei and ZTE as well.