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Tue, Feb 25, 2003 - Page 12 News List

As demand in US slumps, Qualcomm eyes India, China


Qualcomm Inc, whose wireless technology is used by 135 million mobile-phone users, expects India's Reliance Infocomm Ltd's new phone service to give it a start in the world's second-most populous nation.

"They are aiming for seven million subscribers this year," Qualcomm Chief Executive Officer Irwin Jacobs said in an interview. "We're working with them closely."

That would put its Indian users almost at par with China, where China Unicom Ltd had about 7 million subscribers this month for the code-division multiple access, or CDMA, system developed by Qualcomm. That's out of a total of 207 million mobile users in China, the world's biggest wireless market.

Qualcomm, whose sales in the US last year were down 46 percent from 2000, is counting on Asia to boost earnings. Sales in South Korea, which outstripped the US last year, rose an average annual 26 percent over the past two years.

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