South Korea’s Ministry of Science and ICT cleared SK Telecom (SKT) to phase out its 2G service, ending 23 years of service due to dwindling user numbers and high running costs, Yonhap News Agency reported.
The agency stated SKT had 384,000 2G subscribers at 1 June, a fraction of its 27.8 million total. Network operating costs are growing because equipment is outdated and handsets are no longer available, the news service explained.
Lee Tai-hee, deputy minister at the science and ICT department, approved a phased closure by region to limit disruption, with SKT also agreeing to provide some handsets for free to 2G users and 70 per cent discounts on tariffs for two years, Yonhap News Agency wrote.
Rival KT closed its 2G service in 2011, while LG Uplus is yet to announce any plans, the news service said.
SKT ended Q1 with 1.1 million 3G connections, 24.1 million 4G connections and 2.65 million 5G connections, GSMA Intelligence data showed.
Recent Strategy Analytics research found 2G and 3G networks accounted for 46 per cent of subscribers but just 27 per cent of revenue globally at the start of the year: it tipped revenue to drop to 10 per cent by 2023.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back