Asian school kids play games on a tablet. Usage of mobile phones for a range of purposes continues to rise in China. Photo: iStock

You can lose your wallet or purse in China but you can’t lose your mobile phone. That is because you can do almost everything with your mobile phone – and most Chinese would agree.

That is consistent with the latest finding by China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC), which detailed a 3.8% increase in the number of internet users to 802 million in China during the first six months of this year.

For the world’s most populated country with over 1.3 billion people, that means 60% of the Chinese population are internet users. Over 98% have access to mobile phones.

The cumulative mobile internet traffic tripled to reach 26.6 billion gigabytes, according to the CNNIC data. Ditto for China’s international internet gateway bandwidth, which also expanded 20% to 8.83 million Mbps from the end of 2017.

Strong demand for mobile entertainment was recorded in the first half. The growth of short film apps outgrew that of online games, music and reading traffic with 74% of users attracted to the service.

Some 71% of China’s total online users shopped online or made online payments, according to CNNIC. With over 569 million online shoppers, the value of online retail sales surged 30% to over 4 trillion yuan (US$594 billion) during the first half of 2018.

A third bright spot was online takeout service users. As of June 2018, more than 43% of Chinese internet users ordered takeaway food on their mobile phones.

And more Chinese – 21% – subscribed to online financial services in the first half of 2018, up from 16.7% in the same period last year.

The number of online financial service users in June increased by 39.74 million, up 31% from the end of 2017 despite tightened supervision on the industry.

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