Cellphone number 18888888888 goes for $24m in China

BEIJING • How much would you pay for a "lucky" phone number?

In China, the number 18888888888 went for 120 million yuan (S$24 million), www.news.cn reported.

And no, that price does not include a phone, call time or data charges. The number eight sounds like "prosper" in Mandarin and is considered a lucky number.

The Beijing mobile phone number is registered under a Chinese company based in Shantou, but it is not known who uses it, according to reports.

Subscribers often pay for phone numbers with repeated digits, numbers that have a special meaning to them (for instance, their birth date), or numbers with many eights or sixes, which are considered lucky.

Auspicious phone numbers can go for tens of thousands in China, but this latest bid sets a record for the most expensive number ever auctioned, said www.news.cn.

The money will reportedly be donated to charity.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 17, 2017, with the headline Cellphone number 18888888888 goes for $24m in China. Subscribe