China Mobile Says Music Users Top 80M, Touts Temblor Efforts

China Mobile, the world's largest mobile phone service provider, on Wednesday said it had mostly recovered from the earthquake that hit Sichuan, China earlier this year.

The company also reported new information about other aspects of its business in interim financial results posted for the first six months of this year.

The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Sichuan in early May knocked 4,457 base stations out of service, "the most extensive damage ever to our base stations and network equipment," China Mobile said in a statement.

In the worst affected areas, the company noted 20 percent out of service rates.

To get back on track, China Mobile managers set up 25 emergency base stations with airborne equipment, a first for the company, to quickly provide wide area communication for the affected region, the company said.

Representatives from the company were not immediately available to explain what kind of airborne equipment was used, whether hot air balloons or some other kind of gear.

The company's network is now back to normal, China Mobile said.

The company, which boasted 421.7 million subscribers as of the end of July, said membership to a number of its services has grown sharply.

Membership to its mobile music business reached 80.83 million as of June 30, while the company's Fetion instant messaging service hit 111.81 million subscribers. Along with communicating online, Fetion users can send instant messages from desktop computers to others' mobile phones, and vice-versa.

The company has also worked on custom services for enterprises and said its corporate customer base for such services had reached 2.39 million companies as of the end of June.

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