The largest mobile network provider in South Korea, SK Telecom, has been criticised for forcing local manufacturers LG and Samsung to remove Wi-Fi capabilities from its handsets in order to stem the potential money-saving VoIP calls that could be made if Wi-Fi was available to its customers.
The provider is worried that it will see a loss of revenue from voice calls and data bundles as users start using wireless networks in their homes or at work to make calls or go online.
Mobile users in South Korea are calling for more Wi-Fi enabled models to be offered by SK Telecom in order to diminish the cost of mobile internet access in the country and rival network providers are using this as a means of winning over disgruntled former SK Telecom customers.
Another South Korean network, KT, is employing a new series of fixed line and wireless technologies between which customers will be able to switch seamlessly using a single handset.
The repercussions of developments in the South Korean mobile market are likely to be felt world-wide as some of the largest manufacturers in the world operate within its borders.
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