South Korea reveals plans to launch 5G wireless networks 'by 2020'

South Korea has announced that it will be investing KRW1.6 trillion – around £897 million – in the development of fifth generation (5G) super fast wireless connectivity by the end of the decade.

It is thought the next generation of the mobile telecommunication technology will be 1,000 times faster than 4G, with the South Korean government planning to make it commercially available by 2020.

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The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning confirmed the plans as part of its mobile communications development strategy, with a trial of the 5G network reportedly pencilled in for early 2017.

Once realised, 5G will offer high-speed connections as fast as 1Gbps – in real terms, you will be able to download an 800MB movie in just one second, compared with 40 seconds on a 4G network.

Five core 5G services will be developed – mobile 3D imaging; high-speed services; Ultra HD resolution and holograms; artificial intelligence; and future social network services.

The government hopes to be able to showcase the technology at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, and will also work with the US, Europe and China to develop a standard for 5G connectivity.

Science minister Choi Mun-Kee said: "[5G] is a core infrastructure through which knowledge and information can be traded. It will create a ripple effect in the economy, helping to develop related content, platforms and devices."

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by Pete Hayman

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Pete was content editor on What Hi-Fi?, overseeing production and publication of digital content. In creating and curating feature articles for web and print consumption, he provided digital and editorial expertise and support to help reposition What Hi-Fi? as a ‘digital-first’ title; reflecting the contemporary media trends. He is now a senior content strategist.