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Telecoms brace for surge in traffic over Chuseok

Sept 06,2014
As the Chuseok holiday starts, the nation’s three major mobile carriers are operating emergency systems to prepare for a possible spike in mobile communication traffic because people send text messages and call friends and relatives more often during the nation’s biggest holiday.

SK Telecom, KT and LG U+ expect mobile traffic to increase by 500 percent in some congested areas such as expressways as people make their way to their hometowns. Overall communication traffic for the country is expected to rise 2.7 percent during the holiday.

As the number of unlimited data service users has increased recently, data usage other than voice calls and text messages is expected to go up significantly. This year’s Chuseok holiday runs from today through Sept. 9, and for some companies includes Sept. 10.

The number of voice calls is expected to increase 5 percent, text messages 32 percent, and the use of wireless data 20 percent. Use of T Map services is expected to jump 166 percent.

SK Telecom will operate a special communications situation room during the six-day holiday. It will also reinforce its spam message monitor system.

In addition, SK will have 1,500 employees deal with overloads on 10,300 major highways, expressways, cemetery parks, large discount stores and terminals.

In areas, where communication traffic is expected to soar, SK will expand the capacity of its systems up to three times and place more mobile base stations in congested areas.

The nation’s No. 1 mobile carrier will also block SMS phishing messages disguised as holiday greetings with its Smart Eye system.

“We expect that an average of 150 kinds of spam messages will appear per day during the holiday, so smartphone users will have to take precautions when clicking on an Internet address in a text message,” said a spokesman for SK Telecom.

The second-argest mobile carrier KT will also operate an emergency contact system as well as a 24-hour network monitoring system by deploying 370 workers a day during the holiday.

KT plans to expand the number of mobile base stations in the most congested areas on expressways, rest stops, KTX stations, bus terminals and even remote areas where people visit ancestral tombs.

It has also expanded the servers for its Olleh Navigation service by 50 percent.

LG U+ opened a situation room in Sangam-dong, western Seoul.

The company also prepared a set of emergency generators in case of a power failure in industrial areas.

It doubled the number of field agents in major areas to respond to any call quality degradation.

In preparation for a surge in the provinces, LG U+ decided to decentralize switchboards in the metropolitan areas.

The company will also focus on ensuring the smooth operation of LTE based services such as Uflix Movie and U+ Navi Real.

BY KIM JUNG-YOON[kjy@joongang.co.kr]






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