Korea rolls out 60kmph broadband

Can it be used on the move?

Can it be used on the move?

South Korea is planning to roll out mobile wireless broadband that will allow people to use the internet when travelling at 60km per hour.

Korean Telecoms company KT is working with the national Ministry of Information and Communications to build access points in the capital city Seoul and 19 other cities next year.

Although the service, dubbed WiBro, is only guaranteed to run at 1Mbps at 60kmph, the company said it hopes this will be used in trains and cars.

CEO of KT Ken Lee said: "With WiBro we expect to provide new things such as location-based services, IP services and convergence. The goal is to create an [environment] that enhance life for citizens. The result is an economically vibrant city. This will be a catalyst for growth in the new age of Korea."

The Korean Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute claims that WiBro will boost national production by 22tr Won (£11.8bn) and increase exports by 7.6tr Won (£4bn).

KT is aiming to extend the WiBro service to mobile phones, which would give customers voice over IP, internet access and digital media broadcasting capabilities. The company said it is working with HP and Intel to develop handsets for this.

Korea is said to be one of the most advanced countries in its use of IT. The move towards WiBro comes as part of a wider initiative to converge internet services in the country.

Over the last three years, KT, which owns 95 per cent of the fixed-line voice market share and 55 per cent of fixed broadband, has experienced slow growth and has cited saturated broadband markets as a reason for this.