Korea has set a new record in the handset replacement cycle three years in a row.
As of April this year, 77 percent of mobile phone subscribers have reportedly replaced their cell phones, which put the nation in the top spot in the smartphone upgrade cycle rankings.
Many people point out that this phenomenon is attributable to fierce competition between three mobile carriers to lure people with new handsets using mobile phone subsidies.
According to research firm Strategy Analytics and the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning on Nov. 16, 77.1 percent of Koreans had changed their cell phones by April 2014. On average, Koreans replace their cell phones every 15.6 months. In other words, most of them use their new phones for less than one and a half years.
The gap between Korea and Chile, the country in the runner-up position, is nearly 10 percent. Sixty-nine point four percent of Chileans have changed their cell phones during the same period, with a 17.3-month handset replacement cycle. The U.S. occupies the third spot with an 18.2-month cycle, followed by the U.K. with a 19.9-month cycle. Europeans living in Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, or France are said to keep their phones for two years on average.