Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on T Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on Twitter, Angel List, LinkedIn.
Mobile Internet is about to get even faster in Korea. The country’s largest operator SK Telecom introduced the world’s first LTE-Advanced service in June (its two rivals had followed suit by September), and now it has announced that it will roll out a lightning fast 300 megabits per second (Mbps) service in ‘late’ 2014. LG Uplus, Korea’s third carrier, is also preparing the same service for this year.
For context, regular LTE offers around 75 Mbps, with LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) upping data speeds to 150 Mbps, but SK says its new technology — dubbed 3band LTE-Advanced — raises the standard further still. According to Yonhap News, it is made possible by ‘aggregating’ two different frequency bands — in this case, a 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band.
The upshot is that users will be able to enjoy the benefit of incredible speed and more options on the go thanks to the service. For example, SK says that using 3band LTE-A, an 800 MB movie will download in 22 seconds — that’s opposed to 43 seconds using regular LTE-A, 85 seconds using standard LTE, and 7 minutes and 24 seconds over 3G.
SK says the service will go live before the end of the year, but it will only be available for new smartphones, tablets and PCs fitted with dedicated support.
The operator says it is looking into whether it can develop 4- or 5-band LTE for an even faster service — though there’s no time frame for when those might arrive.
Update: Added details of the LG Uplus service.
Image via Jung Yeon-Je/ AFP / Getty Images
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