iPhone Confirmed for Korean Market This Year
Apple’s iPhone has finally been confirmed for a Korean introduction via wireless local carrier KT. According to Telecoms Korea, a separate company, SK Telecom, also claims to have been involved in talks with Apple. It remains unclear, however, if Apple plans to offer the smartphone through multiple carriers instead of establishing an exclusive deal.
Apple has allegedly been involved in talks with the Korean carriers for over a year and initial plans were obstructed by a requirement for handsets to utilize the local WIPI software standard. Government regulators conceded to remove the requirement in 2008.
Despite the relaxed requirements for software, a KT executive in April claimed Apple was to blame for stalling the process.
“Apple iPhone will be in our smartphone line-up,” said Kim Yeon-hak, KT’s CFO. “[We expect that the] iPhone will help to expand the smartphone market and will contribute to increasing the ARPU” (average revenue per user).
The executive declined to provide further details such as a confirmed launch date or final pricing structures.