KT offers tailored mobile options

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KT offers tailored mobile options

KT yesterday launched a customized subscription program in which subscribers can cap the amount of data, voice calls and text messages they use each month.

KT set up seven long-term evolution (LTE) data caps, from 250 megabits to the unlimited use. Subscribers first choose how much data they will consume, then select one of five voice call-text message combinations.

The cheapest package costs 24,000 won ($22.50), with 250MB of LTE data, 100 minutes of voice calls and 100 text messages. Unlimited data, voice and texts are 100,000 won, with the first 15 gigabits of data provided via broadband LTE, which could be as fast as 750 megabits per second, and the rest at 400 megabits per second.

Under a two-year contract, the 24,000 won plan drops to 19,000 won and the unlimited 100,000 won package to 76,000 won.

SK Telecom rolled out a customized subscription plan last May, while LG U+ did so a month ago.

When comparing customized plans for all three mobile carriers on Smart Choice, a website run by the Korea Telecommunications Operators Association, KT was the cheapest at 19,000 won. SKT and LG U+ charged 20,000 won.

The cheapest plans from SKT and LG U+ have 250 MB data and 100 minutes of voice calls. They do not include texts.

The two companies charge separately, at the same rate of about 15 won per message, because of the mobile trend in which people prefer to use messenger apps like Kakao Talk and Line via LTE.

In terms of numbers of possible subscription plan combinations, SKT and LG U+ do not offer unlimited plans.

SKT has five data plans and LG U+ has six, along with four voice call plans. SKT’s most expensive plan provides 6GB of data and 400 minutes of voice calls for 67,500 won, while LG U+ gives 7GB of data and 400 voice call minutes for 69,500 won.

For the industry, the selective fee plans have not been as popular as expected.

“Basic subscription plans are still dominant among our users, because most of them show balanced consumption of each service. Selective plan users who show imbalanced service use patterns account for a small percentage,” a spokesperson from SK Telecom said. “But it is meaningful in terms of serving diverse customer needs.”

The Smart Choice website will soon update the smartphone subscription rate recommendation program with KT’s newly launched selective options.

BY KIM JI-YOON [jiyoon.kim@joongang.co.kr]

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