Discounts on contracts for new phone sales

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Discounts on contracts for new phone sales

The Korea Communications Commission said yesterday consumers who buy mobile phones from stores not affiliated with service carriers will get discounts on fixed-period mobile subscriptions.

And consumers who buy used phones will also be eligible for cheaper monthly fees.

The measure comes five days after the agency decided to make it possible for consumers to buy cell phones from convenience stores and discount chains. The phones will mostly be lower-cost models and the competition among the increased variety of handset vendors is expected to further drag down the price tags.

When it announced that policy, the commission said it would come up with plans for discounts on monthly fees.

Mobile carriers already offer discounts when customers sign up for a contract of at least two years.

“We have agreed with three mobile carriers to make the discounts available beginning later this month,” said a commission spokesman.

A 25 percent discount will be given by the three carriers - SK Telecom, KT and LG U+ - on long-term evolution connectivity service.

For instance, if a person buys a cell phone from a convenience store and signs a contract with one of the carriers for a monthly plan costing 52,000 won ($45.7), the actual rate will only be 39,000 won a month.

As for 3G service, SK Telecom will offer a 30 percent discount and KT a 25 percent discount.

LG U+, which doesn’t run 3G, will provide a 35 percent discount for 2G users.

By Seo Ji-eun [spring@joongang.co.kr]

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