Koreans love their mobile phones
More than nine out of 10 people in Korea, known as one of the world’s most wired nations, owned a mobile phone as of last year, the country’s telecommunications governing body said yesterday.
According to the Korea Communications Commission, there were 45.6 million cell phone users in Korea at the end of last year, up by 2.1 million from 2007. Considering the nation’s population of 48.62 million, 93 percent of Koreans use cell phones, while every Korean household has an average of 2.73 mobile phones, it noted.
SK Telecom, the country’s leading telecom service provider, secured a market share of 50.5 percent, or 23 million users, followed by KTF with 31.5 percent, or 14.4 million users, and LG Telecom with 18 percent, or 8.21 million owners, according to the government data. In contrast, fixed-line telephone users decreased to 22.1 million people last year, falling by 1 million from the year before.
KT Corp., Korea’s largest telephony services provider, had 19.9 million subscribers, or 89.8 percent of the market, and SK Broadband’s subscribers decreased from over 2 million to 1.9 million, the commission said.
“In the aftermath of the economic recession, the growth in mobile phone users is expected to slow sharply this year,” said an official from the commission. “The fixed-line service providers may continue to lose their clients to the Internet telephone market.”
Meanwhile, a mobile research company, Research On Asia, said that Korea’s mobile phone market in 2009 will be cut down by 10 percent.Yonhap