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Thread: is there GSM in Korea

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    is there GSM in Korea

    i was wondering if they have GSM phones in Korea, i know there is CDMA which is very popular but ive heard they are trying to introduce GSM there.

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    No, South Korea uses CDMA as you already know and I believe they also use some sort of 3G technology though I can't recall what frequency that is used on.
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    Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by volcomwrx
    i was wondering if they have GSM phones in Korea, i know there is CDMA which is very popular but ive heard they are trying to introduce GSM there.
    Korea uses CDMA 2000 on 800 MHz and 1,700 MHz.

    There is also 2,100 MHz wCDMA coverage of Inceon and Seoul. This may be where you got the impression that Korea is introducing GSM. As Triband said, there is no GSM service in Korea (or Japan for that matter).

    Seoul also has a PHS service.

    All current phones in Korea are single mode, although Samsung is working on dual mode/dual frequency phones to handle CDMA2000 and wCDMA.
    Bugwart

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    If you are going to Pyongyang you may find a GSM signal set up for the benefit of the Party nabobs and to milk foreign roamers. In the South there is no GSM. It is CDMA-only. You can rent a SIM-equipped CDMA phone at the airport which may permit GSM roaming. There may or may not be a UMTS (WCDMA-2100) signal in some larger cities which you may or may not be able to roam if you have a WCDMA-2100 phone. No one has yet reported that this works.
    Donald Newcomb

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    Re: Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by Bugwart
    Korea uses CDMA 2000 on 800 MHz and 1,700 MHz.

    There is also 2,100 MHz wCDMA coverage of Inceon and Seoul. This may be where you got the impression that Korea is introducing GSM. As Triband said, there is no GSM service in Korea (or Japan for that matter).

    Seoul also has a PHS service.

    All current phones in Korea are single mode, although Samsung is working on dual mode/dual frequency phones to handle CDMA2000 and wCDMA.
    Thanks Bugwart, sure sounds like UMTS/WCDMA is the way to go for Europe, SK and Japan in the near future. It's taken off here in Germany but at the moment not that many people are jumping on board.

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    Re: Re: Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by TriBand81
    Thanks Bugwart, sure sounds like UMTS/WCDMA is the way to go for Europe, SK and Japan in the near future. It's taken off here in Germany but at the moment not that many people are jumping on board.
    Remember that S Korea and Japan have had the most advanced wireless networks for years. The first 3G was in Japan and Korea no matter what technology you use to get there.

    The logic that because it works in Europe it will work in Japan and S Korea breaks down when you consider that in Europe you can drive or take a train through 5 or 6 countries in a single day. Therefore, the idea of owning an international roaming solution has been very popular. You can walk or bike across borders.

    To get to Japan or S. Korea, you generally are flying. You can not drive, bike, walk, or take a train to either country. Since most people fly into, out of and between Japan and Korea, residents and visitors can pick up their cellular roaming solutions at the airports. Owning a handset capable of international roaming is a benefit to the business travellers.



    (BTW, my Samsung i600 roams automtically in Korea and Taiwan)

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    Re: Re: Re: Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by Bugwart
    The logic that because it works in Europe it will work in Japan and S Korea breaks down when you consider that in Europe you can drive or take a train through 5 or 6 countries in a single day. Therefore, the idea of owning an international roaming solution has been very popular. You can walk or bike across borders.

    To get to Japan or S. Korea, you generally are flying. You can not drive, bike, walk, or take a train to either country. Since most people fly into, out of and between Japan and Korea, residents and visitors can pick up their cellular roaming solutions at the airports. Owning a handset capable of international roaming is a benefit to the business travellers.
    Exactly the same logic that applies to the US & Canada. You can drive for 1000 miles in any direction and your phone still works the same. Why do we have to use the same system they use in Europe? That's only of interest to (a few) business travellers. However, Japan much more than anyone else, has long practiced being different just for the sake of being different.

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    Re: Re: Re: Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by Bugwart
    Remember that S Korea and Japan have had the most advanced wireless networks for years. The first 3G was in Japan and Korea no matter what technology you use to get there.

    The logic that because it works in Europe it will work in Japan and S Korea breaks down when you consider that in Europe you can drive or take a train through 5 or 6 countries in a single day. Therefore, the idea of owning an international roaming solution has been very popular. You can walk or bike across borders.

    To get to Japan or S. Korea, you generally are flying. You can not drive, bike, walk, or take a train to either country. Since most people fly into, out of and between Japan and Korea, residents and visitors can pick up their cellular roaming solutions at the airports. Owning a handset capable of international roaming is a benefit to the business travellers.



    (BTW, my Samsung i600 roams automtically in Korea and Taiwan)
    Most business hotels in Korea will provide a rental cdma handset -- it's charged to your room just like using the mini bar.

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    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by polonius
    Most business hotels in Korea will provide a rental cdma handset -- it's charged to your room just like using the mini bar.
    Some business hotels in Japan have vending machines that charge your cellphone. (It seems that most phones there use one of just a few plugs and voltages.) It works sort of like a small self-serve luggage locker with a plug inside. You insert the money, open the door, plug in the phone, close the door and take the key. Come back later, when the phone is charged.

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    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: is there GSM in Korea

    Originally posted by DRNewcomb
    Some business hotels in Japan have vending machines that charge your cellphone. (It seems that most phones there use one of just a few plugs and voltages.) It works sort of like a small self-serve luggage locker with a plug inside. You insert the money, open the door, plug in the phone, close the door and take the key. Come back later, when the phone is charged.
    I have seen the same thing in Korea. It certainly makes sense if you do not have your charger.

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    blimey this is one of the most interesting threads I have seen in a while!

    Bugwart, the story is same in the UK, not many people are willing to jump onboard and risk the W-CDMA.

    The initial problems in the UK, when 3 was the main provider, were poor coverage and dropped calls constantly. Of course, after a while, people locked their phones to GSM, so they roamed on O2 even in W-CDMA coverage areas, and they never had dropped calls. Whether that's stil teh same, IK don't know, mainly because jsut in the field behind my house, theres a tower of some sort. Anyway, since messing around with a few W-CDMA phones on H3G, and never really leaving the city for them to roam, I've moved onto Vodafone 3G, same story here, most people don't want to jump onboard. I can't say much in terms of dropped calls, and coverage, because I hardly used my H3G phones anyway, and I've had a few dropped calls on Vodafone, but it was only a few, amongst many calls. Vodafone have done one good thing: allow customers who have normal SIM cards to use the phones as well as USIM owners, thus, I just use my old SIM card that I've had since 2001. Of the 50 odd or so peopel I have in my phonebook, only 2 use W-CDMA phones

    Back to Asia..... P'yonyang has GSM... GSM World shows North Korea as having GSM..... but, one thing, North Korea has banned mobile phones.... did you all know that??? how does that work??!?!?!?!?!

    Is the Samsung i600 a CDMA phone? and if so, they have CDMA in Taiwan??

    so there's only a handful countries that use CDMA out there i take it..?i take it there are roaming agreementsm jsut like with GSM..? more expensive calls, limited services while roaming, etc... the usual stuff?

    PHS in korea... isn' that a Japanese thing?

    Here's a good question:
    How are phones (W-CDMA and others) used in Japan and Korea? i.e. in the UK, W-CDMA phones are used for normal calls, SMS's, videotelephony, and access to WAP, taking pictures and sending them via MMS, and in some cases, email. I don't see much going on between Japanese and Korean handsets apart from taking picture sand sending them via email... am i missing something?

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    Originally posted by badgerbadger
    Here's a good question:
    How are phones (W-CDMA and others) used in Japan and Korea? i.e. in the UK, W-CDMA phones are used for normal calls, SMS's, videotelephony, and access to WAP, taking pictures and sending them via MMS, and in some cases, email. I don't see much going on between Japanese and Korean handsets apart from taking picture sand sending them via email... am i missing something?
    Taking pictures, video and video calls I would say are the main thing. Take a stroll by the Hachiko statue outside Shibuya station. At any given moment, there must be 30 Japanese standing there taking a picture of someone in front of the statue and sending it somewhere.

    Concerning wCDMA in Europe, I too only know a few people who have upgraded from GSM. If/when I do (probably some time this year) I'll do it as you suggested, keep my existing SIM and just get a new handset. The main thing that has kept me from doing so before now is that there hasn't been a WCDMA/GSM 900/1900 handset -- I go to north america frequently, and I am NOT going back to the days when I had to swap handsets when I go there. But the new Nokia will handle it.

    My interest in most of the new services is moderate at best. What I would most be interested in 3G for is connecting to my laptop -- now that they went through two rounds of price cuts for data last year, it's becoming reasonable. I'd love to have WiFi as well, but Telia (which has roaming agreements in place that would keep me connected throughout most of the world now) still wants a rather hefty 1500 SEK/month for unlimited service. They've got to bring it down to at least 1000 before I'll sign up.

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    I would disagree regarding 3G uptake in Europe, especially the UK. 3 already has more than 1 million customers and the other networks are reporting very successful uptake of their 3G services.

    Of course 3G is no where near as popular as standard 2.5G services at the moment, but I would imagine that we shall a greater uptake when more 2,5G contracts are up for renewal and the networks provide incentives to switch to 3G.

    The PAYG market as yet to see any major 3G initiative from anyone other than 3, so we shall probably see a greater uptake when 3G PAYG services are better implemeneted.

    People are coming round to 3G much more now and one can see that the main networks have really learnt alot of lessons from 3's launch and subsequent experiences. I have never experenced a dropped call with Vodafone 3G, although once or twice I have experienced a few errors when trying to download content.

    I currently know 4 people with a 3G handset, not including myself and this is almost certain to increase over the coming year.

    New services expected to launch in Europe will almost certainly increase 3G uptake e.g. i-mode; live mobile teleivion; the ability to pay for goods and services using a mobile; more GPS based services, etc.
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    One might attribute a large portion of 3's initial popularity to their willingness to give up billions on dirt-cheap, loss-leader introductory voice rates, while paying hugely for domestic GSM roaming. Many customers just abandoned their bulky 3G handsets and moved the 3G-SIM into a smaller GSM handset, until 3 started watching for the practice with a threat to cut the customer off if they didn't use the 3 handset.

    I really see 3G more as a natural augmentation to existing 2.5G systems more than as a whole new wireless system.

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    I will attempt to answer some of your questions.

    Originally posted by badgerbadger
    Is the Samsung i600 a CDMA phone? and if so, they have CDMA in Taiwan??
    Yes, APBW launched CDMA by building on the old 800 MHz AMPS network. They have roaming agreements, but services are limited.
    so there's only a handful countries that use CDMA out there i take it..?
    There are considerably more GSM networks out there, but there are also much more than a handful of CDMA networks.

    PHS in korea... isn' that a Japanese thing?
    Yes, PHS is a Japanese thing, however it has become quite popular elsewhere. There is PHS in the cities here in Taiwan also. PHS is priced below cellular and thus appeals to people who want wireless, but do not need international roaming or nationwide coverage.

    Here's a good question:
    How are phones (W-CDMA and others) used in Japan and Korea? i.e. in the UK, W-CDMA phones are used for normal calls, SMS's, videotelephony, and access to WAP, taking pictures and sending them via MMS, and in some cases, email. I don't see much going on between Japanese and Korean handsets apart from taking picture sand sending them via email... am i missing something?
    In addition to the services that you mentioned, both the Koreans and Japanese have brought out many innovative applications that people are using.

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