A South Korean court has ordered KT to keep its 2G network operational, hours before the company planned to switch off its network.
The Seoul Administrative Court has accepted a request for the order, which had been submitted by the nearly 1,000 plaintiffs involved in a class-action lawsuit seeking to keep the network up and running, Korea Heraldreported.
The plaintiffs, customers of KT's 2G CDMA network, filed suit last week in a bid to have regulator KCC's decision to allow the switch-off overturned.
KT will now be prevented from shutting down its network, and refarming the 1,800MHz spectrum for LTE, until the court decides otherwise or the case is concluded.
In the ruling, the court said there was an “urgent need” to halt the effect of the decision, due to concerns the operator's 159,000 remaining 2G customers could face “irreparable damage” if services are shut off.
KCC decided to allow KT to shut down its network last month, after rejecting two previous requests by the operator on the grounds that there remained too many 2G customers that would be affected.
But KT's 2G customer base now represents less than 1% of its total wireless customers.
KT had been scheduled to launch LTE this week, but the court decision could potentially delay these plans.