South Korea’s big three mobile network operators all launched their initial 5G offering at 00:01 on the 1st December

South Korean telcos, SK Telecom, LG UPlus and KT Corp turned on their 5G networks as of the 1st December, beginning the launch of commercial 5G services in the country.

The services are currently limited to enterprise customers, with consumer mobile services not expected to be launched in South Korea until March 2019. To celebrate the launch, SK Telecom’s CEO Park Jung Ho conducted a video call over the company’s new 5G networks.

"I feel deeply moved by this first video call on a 5G smartphone," he told the Korea Herald newspaper.

"It was much clearer than on LTE and the response was quick," he added.

The three network operators unveiled slightly different services on Saturday.

SK Telecom’s 5GX service will be available through parts of Seoul and six other metropolitan areas in South Korea.

LG Uplus is launching 7,000 base stations across the country to facilitate the rollout of the initial phase of its 5G launch in eleven towns and cities.

KT Telecom launched its first 5G offering in Gwacheon, completing the trilogy of 5G launches in the Korean peninsula.

The launches mean that Korea has won the race to be the first Asian nation to launch commercial 5G services. However, it is expected to face stiff competition from China in the race to roll out mobile 5G services for consumers.  


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