HP to open research center in South Korea

Over the next five years, the company will spend $40 million on its new lab, which will focus on the digital home.

Hewlett-Packard plans to invest heavily in a new research center in South Korea that will focus on digital home concepts, mobile computing and radio frequency identification technology.

HP's new Korea Development Center is the company's seventh laboratory. The company plans to invest $40 million in it over the next five years. Additionally, the South Korea Ministry of Industry and Communication will invest $10 million in the project. Intel opened a lab in South Korea earlier this year.

Approximately 40 to 50 research fellows will be working at the center by the end of the year. Marc McEachern, formerly head of HP Japan's mobile and media system research unit, will manage the Korea Development Center.

"Korea is five times faster than any other country in telecommunication service model development and leading state-of-the-art communication technology," said Frederick Kitson, director at HP's Mobile & Media System research unit.

Daeje Chin, minister of South Korea Ministry of Industry, met HP CEO Carly Fiorina last year during a visit to the United States and requested that the company establish a research center. He had been in the United States as part of the visit of South Korea President Roh Moo-hyun.

Kim Yong-Young of ZDNet Korea reported from Seoul.