South Korea will launch the world’s first nationwide 5G mobile networks, a transformational leap that has superpowers sparring for control of an innovation that could change the day-to-day lives of billions of people.
Hyper-wired South Korea has long had a reputation for technical prowess, and Seoul has made the 5G rollout a priority as it seeks to stimulate stuttering economic growth. The system will bring smartphones near-instantaneous connectivity — 20 times faster than existing 4G — allowing users to download entire movies in less than a second.
More than three million South Koreans will switch to 5G by the end of this year, predicted KT vice-president Lee Pil-jae. Until now, no mobile networks have offered nationwide 5G access. In the US, hotspots in a few selected cities have offered 5G speeds but over wifi only, while Qatari firm Ooredoo says it offers 5G services in and around Doha — but does not have devices available to use them.
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25 August, 2019