Korean telcos dangle games as LTE bait

Country's three operators identify mobile games as key to broadening appeal of LTE to local users, and hopes to grow subscription to 16 million by end-2012, according to report.
Written by Kevin Kwang, Contributor

South Korea's mobile operators are looking to expand their mobile games platform in an effort to lure more customers to long-term evolution (LTE) networks and boost growth in the local mobile market.

The Yonhap News Agency reported on Wednesday that the country's three carriers have all announced intentions to expand their mobile games portfolio to entice consumers with services they would covet. LG Uplus, for one, announced on Wednesday its masterplan to introduce a cloud games services that supports users on various device platforms such as smartphones, tablets, and Internet Protocol (IP) TVs, it said.

"The nationwide LTE network and other connectivity technologies will provide the most effective and genuine cloud games experience to users," Chun Byung-Wook, a LG Uplus executive, told the news agency. "Cloud games will be one of the company's core LTE strategies and bring about an innovative change in the LTE market."

The company is reportedly in talks with developers such as Sega and Warner Brothers to broaden its games portfolio.

Top carrier SK Telecom is also targeting this segment by rolling out two mobile price plans specifically for LTE games players, with another set to be unveiled "this fall", the report noted. It had earlier partnered local games companies Nexon and Neowiz to increase its content variety.

KT, too, released four mobile network games to be played on LTE and will expand its mobile games line-up in the latter half of 2012, Yonhap News Agency said.

The report added that the three operators, which provide LTE services to 6.1 million users as of end-May, hope to more than double this figure to 16 million by the end of the year.

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