SKorean Carriers Switch on 5G Networks Ahead of Schedule
07 April, 2019, 00:29 | Author: Leah Owens
USA carrier Verizon launched its mobile 5G network in the U.S. yesterday, a week early, as part of an attempt to scupper South Korean's claim to be the first. By doing so, Korea could win race to become the world's first country to realize commercial 5G services.
Smaller local rival LG Electronics plans to release its 5G smartphone in South Korea later this month.
The celebrities - including two members of K-pop band EXO and Olympic ice-skating heroine Kim Yu-na - were "the world's first 5G smartphone subscribers", it said.
5G will allow users to download movies in less than a second.
SK Telecom is working with its memory-chip making affiliate SK Hynix to build a highly digitised and connected factory powered by 5G technology, Mr. Ryu said.
But according to Yonhap, the South Korean launches came two hours earlier, at 11pm (10pm Singapore time) on Wednesday.
Among South Korea's top three telecom operators, SK Telecom and KT Corp do not use Huawei equipment for 5G services.
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Countries including South Korea, United States, China and Japan are racing to market 5G, hoping the technology will spur breakthrough in fields such as smart cities and autonomous cars.
Samsung said its Galaxy S10 5G device will offer speeds up to 20 times faster than current phones as it began selling the handsets on Friday.
Galaxy S10 5G will be the world's first commercially available 5G smartphone and it will also launch on Verizon's 5G network.
USA telecom operator AT&T Incorporation stated that it was the first to debut a standards-based and commercial 5G service in Dec 2018. The signs read: "Play with the world with KT 5G".
The company showcased virtual reality devices, a pair of augmented reality glasses called Magic Leap One and the hologram-combined artificial intelligence platform NUGU at the shop, all of which will be enabled by its 5G network.
In this Wednesday, April 3, 2019, photo, South Korean figure skating superstar Yuna Kim attends a media showcase for its 5G service in Seoul, South Korea.
"The government and those in the telecommunication industry including the three mobile carriers and smartphone manufacturers agreed that the launch of commercial 5G services should not be delayed any longer and made a decision to launch them in a blitz on April 3", Yu said.
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The Galaxy S10 5G puts the unrivalled power, speed and connectivity of 5G networks directly into the hands of consumers. Interestingly, Motorola did manage to beat Samsung to the punch in regards to 5G-enabled devices.
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