Guizhou Province, China's first comprehensive big data pilot area, had set up 20,215 5G base stations as of Wednesday to accelerate 5G development, local authorities said.
The province in southwest China is currently home to more than 9 million 5G users, according to the Big Data Development Administration of Guizhou Province.
The mountainous province is one of China's most impoverished areas, with electricity, coal, tobacco and liquor production as its major industries. As China started to upgrade its economy toward a greener vision with more advanced technologies, Guizhou accelerated its economic restructuring and emerged as the front-runner of the country's big data industry.
Guizhou has stepped up the use of 5G technology in fields such as transport, healthcare and tourism, with the number of 5G application projects in the province reaching more than 170.
The country greenlighted the commercial use of 5G in 2019. Promising faster speeds, wider broadband and lower latency, 5G network is regarded as the "infrastructure" for a variety of next-generation digital technologies including artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality and driverless vehicles.
China had set up 718,000 5G base stations as of November this year, Liu Liehong, vice-minister of Industry and Information Technology, said Wednesday.