Korea’s Mobile Market – A window to 3G

– A detailed report that shows why and how the Korean mobile market has developed into the ultimate 3G showcase.

The market for mobile phones is characterised by strong competition, falling prices and mobile operators with a short-term and quantitative view on their customer base. Market penetration has, in many countries reached a level, which makes it difficult to identify new and attractive segments. The acquisition cost is often too high compared with the ARPU generated by these segments.

The selling process has shifted its focus from new to replacement sales. At the same time, mobile services based on SMS and WAP/GPRS represent an increasing part of operators’ revenue. On top of this, the majority of customers will require new terminals in order to be able to make full use of these revenue-generating services of the future. In short, the business is moving from sale of talk-based services to the sale of content-based services.

Many people are still talking about Japan and DoCoMo, when they talk about how a future mobile market will look. If you take a closer look at the Japanese business case, you will see that since the launch of Imode in Japan, the acquisition cost has risen, ARPU has declined and the percentage of Japanese who use their terminals for non-voice services is far below European figures! In other words – Japan is not the success that many had hoped for.

With 3G just round the corner, many of the 3G players are looking for examples of a business case that can show them how to structure and develop a solid 3G market. We have found the country where the mobile operators have proved over the last two years that a 3G market can be a success. Korea is the country where the operators have proved through their strategies and actions that:

·The customers are willing to pay a higher price for advanced terminals
·A wide variety of mobile services has a positive effect on MOU
·Advanced terminals have a positive effect on the operators ARPU
·The operators can reduce their sales and marketing costs using the right strategy
·There is a market for 3G operators

This report about the Korean mobile market shows in detail how the operators work. The report is the closest you will get to a script for a live 3G business case. When you have read this unique report, you will forget all about Japan and focus on all there is to be learned from Korea.

To be honest, there has been a lot of criticism around 3G, but the fact is that the mobile sector cannot benefit from criticism that is not constructive. With this encompassing report, we not only have found the documentation that there is a market for 3G – we have also compiled all the concrete experience – making it much easier to roll-out a business case in a 3G market.

Strand Consult has spent almost 9 months analysing the worlds most advanced mobile market, met with all the players in the mobile value chain and been honoured to have access to information not previously disclosed. We describe what the operators, the content owners and the technology companies business case actually looks like for real. With key figures and information we give a detailed description of a mobile market with over 30 million mobile customers – of which 9 million are “3G” users.

It is not a secret that many mobile operators have already purchased this report – Korea is the closest we can get to a live 3G business case today.

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