Website opens for budget phones, from Korea

KoreaThe Korea Mobile Virtual Network Operators Association (KMVNO) said Thursday that it will start a Budget Phone Hub website, an online market for budget smartphones. The KMVNO made that announcement as it held a media day to celebrate reaching 5 million subscribers. “The online market will help cut telecom expenses for consumers, and allow mobile operators to expand distribution channels,” said KMVNO Chairman Lee Tong-hyung.

Samsung, TeliaSonera discuss tie-up over IoT

KoreaSenior officials from TeliaSonera, the biggest telecommunications company in Scandinavia, have met Samsung Electronics executives to discuss collaboration in the development of the Internet of Things (IoT). “They discussed how to expand the partnership in wireless technology and modem chips to be used in TeliaSonera’s long-term evolution (LTE) networks,” a Samsung official said Friday.

KT, TeliaSonera teaming up over IoT

KoreaKT is seeking to collaborate with TeliaSonera, the largest telecommunications company in Scandinavia, in the development of the Internet of Things (IoT) and fifth-generation (5G) technology. TeliaSonera’s top management visited KT’s main office in downtown Seoul and technology centers in Yangjae, southern Seoul. They were briefed on KT’s media services powered by its long-term evolution (LTE) technology.

Alcatel-Lucent signs deal with KT over 5G networks

KoreaAlcatel-Lucent agreed with KT to develop next-generation wireless technology focusing on ultra-fast fifth-generation (5G) networks, the Korean unit of the French company said in a statement, Tuesday. Under a memorandum of understanding (MOU), the two will focus on Alcatel-Lucent’s virtualized Radio Access Network (vRAN) technology. “This agreement will allow KT to meet the massive connectivity demands of the Internet of Things (IoT) delivering a personalized experience as more people, devices and machines are connected,” Alcatel-Lucent said.

Samsung’s $930 million fine to be cut in Apple patent case

KoreaNEW YORK/SAN FRANCISCO: Apple was handed a mixed ruling by a US appeals court in the latest twist in a blockbuster intellectual property battle with Samsung Electronics, as a prior patent infringement verdict was upheld but a trademark finding that the iPhone’s appearance could be protected was thrown out. That means up to 40% of a $930 million verdict which had been won by Apple must be reconsidered.

SK Telecom pushes for trading platform

KoreaSK Telecom said Friday that it will spend more in beefing up its online platform businesses for corporate clients, singling out trade brokering as one of its next cash cows. “We aim to create a new ecosystem in the online trading arena by promoting our platforms,” it said. The SK Group’s telecommunications affiliate has launched an online business-to-business (B2B) trading platform.

LG Uplus demonstrates faster LTE network

KoreaLG Uplus, the nation’s smallest mobile carrier, demonstrated for the first time its new long-term evolution (LTE) network that is eight times faster than the original LTE, Thursday. The telecom company said the new network, LTE in Unlicensed spectrum, or LTE-U, is capable of transmitting data at up to 600 megabits-per-second (Mbps). This technology taps into the 5.8-gigahertz (GHz) unlicensed spectrum, which has been used for Wi-Fi, with the LTE network.

S. Korea grabs Google’s first Asian ‘campus’

KoreaSEOUL: Google formally opened its first Asian start-up “campus” in Seoul on May 8 – a marquee-name nod to South Korea’s aspirations as a regional hub for a new generation of tech entrepreneurs.  Opened by President Park Geun-Hye who has touted establishing a “creative economy” as a key policy for her administration, Campus Seoul is housed in the capital’s upscale Gangnam district which has become a focal point for the Korean start-up community.

Samsung begins construction of $14.3 billion chip plant

KoreaSEOUL: Samsung kicked off construction of a new chip plant to help fuel growth as smartphone sales slow, saying it would invest 15.6 trillion won ($14.3 billion) until production begins in 2017.  The South Korean electronics giant, which has seen a surge in demand for chips, broke ground on the new plant in the city of Pyeongtaek, 70 kilometres (44 miles) south of Seoul. Production at the 2.89 million square-meter plant will begin in the latter half of 2017, Samsung said in a statement.

India smartphone market contracts but Samsung maintains leadership in Q1 : CMR

IndiaNEW DELHI: Samsung retained its leadership in the India smartphone and overall market even as smartphone market contracted 7 per cent sequentially, in January to March quarter 2015, analysts at CyberMedia Research said Tuesday. India’s mobile handsets market declined 15 per cent in terms of overall shipments over Q4 2014, to 53 million mobile handsets of which, 37 per cent (19.5 million) were smartphones, CyberMedia said. Featurephone shipments declined 18 per cent sequentially.

‘Samsung retains No. 1 spot in Indian smartphone market’

KoreaNEW DELHI: Samsung retained its leadership in the India smartphone and overall market even as smartphone market contracted 7% sequentially, in January to March quarter 2015, analysts at CyberMedia Research said. India’s mobile handsets market declined 15% in terms of overall shipments over Q4 2014, to 53 million mobile handsets of which, 37% (19.5 million) were smartphones, CyberMedia said. Feature phone shipments declined 18% sequentially.

LG launches Magna LTE at Rs 16,500

KoreaNEW DELHI: LG has launched a mid-range smartphone Magna LTE priced at Rs 16,500 in India. The smartphone with a slightly curved design runs on Android 5.0 Lollipop (skinned with LG UI) and features a 5-inch HD display with pixel density of 294ppi. Magna LTE is powered by 1.3 GHz quad-core processor and comes with 1GB RAM and packs 8GB of internal storage, which can be expanded through microSD card (up to 32GB).

SK hynix’s operating profit jumps 50%

KoreaSK hynix has reported 1.59 trillion won in operating profit in the first quarter, up 50.2 percent from a year earlier, on stronger margins for key products and cost-cutting. It beat the market consensus of 1.4 trillion won. Its first-quarter operating profit was the second-largest in its history, following a record 1.67 trillion won a quarter earlier. SK hynix posted 1.29 trillion won in net profit, up 61.5 percent from a year ago, it said Thursday. Sales came in at 4.82 trillion won, up 29 percent from a year earlier.

Spreadtrum chipsets adopted for Samsung WCDMA tablets and smartphone

KoreaSpreadtrum Communications has announced that its quad-core mobile chipset, the SC7730ST, and its dual-core mobile chipset, the SC7727S, have been adopted by Samsung Electronics in a series of tablets and smartphones. The SC7730ST is now shipping in Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 3 V tablets, which are 7-inch models available with WCDMA (SM-T116 series) and Wi-Fi ( SM-T113 series) features. These tablets, designed with Spreadtrum’s 1.3GHz quad-core processor, feature a 7-inch WSVGA display, a 2MP camera, 8GB internal memory and 1GB RAM, a 32GB MicroSD slot and extended battery life of up to eight hours on video playback.

Cloud giant eyes public and private sectors, from Korea

KoreaAmazon Web Service (AWS), the world’s leading cloud service provider, showed confidence that Korea’s conservative public organizations and financial institutions will adopt its cloud service. “It is quite possible that the nation’s public organizations and financial institutions will introduce AWS cloud services once we can handle their issues related to regulations and compliances,” AWS Korea’s managing director Doug Yeum said during a press conference in Seoul, Monday.

Samsung smartphones lose steam in China market

KoreaEver since reaching a sales zenith in 2013, Samsung smartphones have been facing an increasing challenge from their Chinese counterparts, losing ground to Chinese brands such as Huawei, Lenovo and Xiaomi in the mainland market in 2014 and also suffering strong competition from Chinese rivals in international markets, according to the Shanghai-based China Business News (CBN).

Galaxy S6, Edge sales seen at over 70 million

KoreaSamsung Electronics said Wednesday it expects the sales of the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge phones to breach the 70-million mark. “The Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are drawing positive responses. I have no doubt that they will be the biggest-sellers in the Galaxy series ever,” an executive said ahead of his participation in a weekly meeting with presidents of Samsung affiliates at the company’s Seocho headquarters in southern Seoul, Wednesday. Asked about sales estimation, he said, “We expect 70 million plus.”

Digitimes Research: Samsung semiconductor capex to reach record high in 2015

KoreaSemiconductor capital spending by Samsung Electronics is expected to reach an all-time high of US$15 billion in 2015, making the company’s capex the world’s highest in the semiconductor industry for the sixth straight year since 2010, according to an estimate of Digitimes Research. Meanwhile, SK Hynix’s capex is expected to stay flat at US$5.1 billion in 2015 as compared to the previous year. Samsung’s capex for system ICs in 2015 will reach US$4 billion compared to US$2.9 billion in the previous year, mainly to finance the commencement of its Line-17 fab in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi Province and a continued build-up of its 14nm production capacity at its plant in Austin, Texas.

Samsung confident about S6 outlook

KoreaBuoyed by a market-beating first-quarter performance, Samsung appeared to regain much of its confidence with its mobile chief appealing to customer loyalty for its latest Galaxy 6 and Edge smartphones on the eve of the start of global sales. “Sales of the S6 depend on the intensity of your support,” co-CEO Shin Jong-kyun said at a news conference to launch the device in Korea, Thursday.

Hon Hai Will Build IT Service JV In Mainland China With SK Group

TaiwanTaiwan’s Hon Hai Precision and South Korea’s SK C&C, a subsidiary of SK Group, will establish a joint venture to provide information technology services in mainland China. Hon Hai said that the joint venture will first provide information technology services to Hon Hai’s plants in mainland China and offer integrated security systems to other companies in mainland China. According to Hon Hai, the joint venture, which will be formally launched in May 2015, will also explore information technology business opportunities in medical and financial sectors.