As SK Telecom began to go ahead in occupying the market by building the LoRa Network, a network exclusively for the Internet of Things (IoT), KT and LG U+ began to reacted by announcing a plan to build a joint national NB-IoT communication network
KT and LG U+ announced that they will jointly carry forward the technology standardization for the early commercialization of the joint national NB-IoT communication network and complete a nationwide network next year in a joint press conference at KT Building in Sejong-ro, Seoul on November 3.
The two companies are planning to realize economies of scale by procuring IoT core components such as chipsets, modules and terminals via the expansion of cooperation with major IoT manufacturers at home and abroad.
In addition, they will jointly respond to the government’s IoT policies and create a better business environment in concert with the Korea IoT Association.
It is the utility sector that both companies will go ahead with first via the construction of the NB-IoT communication network. The companies will replace the existing gas, water, and electricity meters with NB-IoT-based meters and carry out various value-added projects with a focus on a remote meter reading service and control via the advanced meters.
“LG U + has provided comprehensive solutions covering the entire network from platform to platform by actively applying the IoT to the home, public and industrial sectors,” said Ahn Sung-joon, head of the IoT Business Division at LG U+. “We will secure global competitiveness in the domestic NB-IoT industry by inducing the early creation of IoT ecosystem and acceleration of market growth through the business cooperation with KT.”
It is quite unusual for rivals to collaborate with each other in the telecommunications industry having cutthroat competition. The reason why the two companies banded together is that there was an expectation that the IoT market will grow in the future.
The Laura International Alliance, launched last year more than 400 companies including network operators such as SK Telecom, Comcast, Softbank, Orange and Swisscom, and system equipment companies such as Cisco, IBM and HP. The NB-IoT Alliance includes KT, LG U +, China Mobile, AT & T and T Mobile in the US and Vodafone in the UK.