Sunday, July 11, 2021

Mobile ID cards in Korea by 2025


 As reported by Yonhap and other local news media, the Korean government plans to introduce mobile ID cards by 2025.  As reported, "The planned introduction of mobile ID cards and other measures are included in the government's second five-year basic plan for the electronic government released by the Ministry of the Interior and Safety. The ministry presented "A good world opened by digital" as the vision of the basic e-government plan. The plan calls for raising the digital conversion rate of major public services to 80 percent and the cloud computing conversion rate of the administrative and public sector to 100 percent by 2025. Specifically, the use of electronic certificates, mobile identify verification and simple authentication will be expanded, the ministry said. In particular, the mobile driver's license, which will be introduced late this year, is expected to enable convenient identification both online and offline, it said."

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Korea leads world in reliable 5G download speeds


 A recent analysis by OpenSignal showed that Korea leads the world in the download speeds that can be reliably expected by 5G users. (click on the graphic for a full size version)  Reliable speed is the average speed that 90% of all users exceed.

The second graphic, below, shows the reliable download speeds for all 20 countries included in the Opensignal report.  Korea's 5G speeds are followed, in order, by those in Taiwan, Finland, and Australia.



Friday, June 18, 2021

Kakao now Korea's third most valuable firm

 


As reported by Yonhap, Kakao recently surpassed Naver to become Korea's third most valuable firm.(Click on the graphic showing Kakao's headquarters in Jeju for a full size version) As reported by Yonhap, "Kakao Corp. has an insatiable appetite for platform businesses, spanning messenger, e-commerce, mobility, content and finance, and now it has earned another title: South Korea's third-most valuable company."  As of June 15, "Kakao's shares rose 1.4 percent to close at a record high of 144,500 won (US$129) on Tuesday, extending its winning streak to a seventh day. Its market capitalization stood at 64.1 trillion won, taking the No. 3 spot following two chip giants -- Samsung Electronics Co. and SK hynix Inc."  Furthermore, "While the nation's top two platform operators were once content to stay in their own competitive fields -- Naver in portal and Kakao in messenger -- they are now competing on multiple fronts, including e-commerce, mobile payment, content and finance."

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Strong ICT exports in May 2021

 


As reported by The Korea Herald, "South Korea's exports of information and communication technology (ICT) products rose around 30 percent last month, data showed Monday, thanks to strong demand for semiconductors, displays and mobile phones amid signs of a global economic recovery from the pandemic-induced slump. Outbound shipments of ICT products were tallied at $17.73 billion in May, up 27.4 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from the Ministry of Science and ICT. The latest figure marked the second-largest amount for the month on record after 2018 and the 12th consecutive month of on-year gains."

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

The end of 2G mobile telephony in Korea

 

As reported by The Korea Joongang Daily and other local media, the Ministry of Science and ICT is allowing LGU+ to discontinue its 2G service in late June of this year. (click on the graphic at left to see some of the 2G phones that were popular beginning in the late 1990s)  The Joongang Daily article noted that "LG was the last of Korea's three mobile carriers to keep 2G services going. KT suspended them in 2012 and SK Telecom, the biggest in Korea, in July 2020." It went on to report that "As of mid-May, 140,000 LG U+ subscribers were using 2G networks, 0.82 percent of the carrier’s customer base. They will be offered discounts on plans using 4G LTE or 5G network. They will all need new phones, and will be offered free smartphones from among 15 options. For the sake of convenience, 2G users must be able to make the shift to 4G or 5G via phone, without visiting a store. For customers over 65, an LG U+ employee can visit their homes."  The end of an era, as Korea is pushing to increase adoption of its new 5G services.