KT hangs up on fixed phone services

Dylan Bushell-Embling
28 Oct 2011

Korea's KT has hammered a nail into its fixed telephony business by pulling all investment funding for the operations.

The company yesterday announced it would cease investment in its fixed-line telephony business, and instead divert the funds to the mobile internet sector, Korea Times reported.

KT has declared that there is no future in its fixed phone business, the Times said. The company makes more money from its mobile business, even though it is the incumbent fixed-line and only the second-ranked mobile provider in the nation.

The company wants to use the funds to exploit the growing popularity of smartphones, through initiatives covering content as well as services.

KT isn't the only South Korean operator relying increasingly on mobile broadband revenue. Rival SK Telecom revealed it managed to increase its overall revenue in the third quarter, in the face of shrinking profit and a coerced cut in base mobile service tariffs.

The company reported an 18% slump in net profit to 383.9 billion won ($344.4 million) for the quarter ending in September.

Most of the slump can be attributed to increased operating expenses associated with the planned spinoff of platform business SK Planet, announced in June, as well as other significant one-off costs.

SK Telecom attributed a 1.9% increase in consolidated revenue to growing wireless internet usage and increased smartphone adoption.

Yet mobile service revenue fell 1.1% year-on-year, partly as a result of the 1,000 won base rate cut the operator agreed to implement for its mobile services in June, after ceding to pressure from regulators.

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