South Korea has established itself as the early market-leader for 5G technology deployment with 90% of the Korean population ready to use 5G, according to global technology and telecom analyst Omdia’s 5G Market Progress Assessment.
To date, 5G adoption in the country has grown to 4.67 million, which Omdia attributes to strong government support and a vibrant supplier ecosystem.
“The global market is steadily gearing up for 5G deployment, but right now South Korea is leading the way,” said Stephen Myers, Omdia’s principal analyst. “We can expect to see a much larger number of commercial 5G launches in major global markets in the next 12-18 months as more spectrum is released across the world.”
The three leading Korean service providers have all made available commercial 5G mass-market offerings, and mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) services have been launched in the country using 2680MHz of 5G spectrum across the 3.5GHz and 28GHz bands.
Earlier this year, Korean TV and radio network SBS (Seoul Broadcasting System), using LiveU’s integrated 5G technology, provided a live broadcast of the election day coverage in South Korea using Korea Telecom’s network.
LiveU’s devices were used to cover the polling stations, major candidates’ offices and reactions to the election results under the strict safe distancing measures in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic. All the live feeds were streamed to a single server and completely synched, operating as part of a cost-effective, remote at-home production model.
Omdia’s 5G report analysed 22 leading 5G countries’ deployment of 5G technology, assessing the progress of 5G based on operator launches, network coverage and subscriber take-up, as well as 5G spectrum availability and the regulatory ecosystem.
Data was collected during end-December period and was originally due for publication in mid-March, but was delayed till June due to Covid-19.