It is a little boring if the media is full of the articles like: the best news in 2004, the most important events in 2004, because all of them has already happened. Why not predict the future in 2005, and then verify it at the end of the year? It is like gambling, but you will win if you know the skill.
(1) MII will distribute 3G license to the operators or not next year? If so, how many and what standard?
This is the long dispute in China when 3G developed. My guess is that the license should be distributed next year according to the many actions happened recently. But it is hard to say how many. If I have to say, I think it should be two or four, depending if the four main operators will merge to two. TDSCDMA will be applied in a small part, with WCDMA and CDMA2000 be applied as well.
(2) IP TV will be a major development for the fixed line operators, that are China Telecom and China Netcom. China Telecom has already provide the service called "Inter Sky" to provide data and infos via broadband. China Netcom has invited the media tycoon Rupert Murdoch to be the independent director, which certainly shows its ambitious plan to enter into media fields. IPTV is the best way to implement their plan without offending the authority.
(3) China Telecom and China Netcom would like to share the profit with the other two, China Mobile and Unicom, in the mobile phone service. The source in China Telecom said that they would order the mobile phone less than 1000 RMB to provide the voice service, if they get the 3G license. The price fight can not be avoided, which will benefit the customers. But the authority may be reluctant to see that.
(4) Telecom manufacturers could still enjoy the contract with main operators. Until now, ZTE and Huawei has extended their business to overseas market, partly showing they can't compete with the foreign tycoons in the local market. l
(5) Local content providers should focus on other business instead of SMS. The market has so many competitors and a major merge may appear to syndicate the sources.
(6) A great chang of high officials will happen in MII and other operators.
Anyway, it is just my personal guess based on my understanding...