SK Telecom reveals major IoT strategy

16 March 2016 |


South Korean operator SK Telecom has announced that it will launch a nationwide Low-Power Wide-Area Network (LPWAN) for IoT by the end of the year.

The operator will invest approximately $83 million (KRW 100 billion) in its IoT strategy, which also includes developing IoT-dedicated modules and upgrading its IoT platform ThingPlug.

LPWAN networks are designed to support communication among IoT devices, and are said to transmit data over tens of kilometres while consuming much less power.

It is hoped LPWAN will encourage IoT business models such as metering, location tracking and monitoring, and control services.

Along with nationwide LPWAN deployment, SK Telecom will also establish an IoT control centre to manage network equipment and IoT devices. The IoT control centre will monitor real-time status of the nationwide IoT network and all connected devices.

“Our forward-looking efforts will also contribute to the creation of an enriched IoT ecosystem where developers and startups/SMEs can easily build diverse IoT services that can bring new and differentiated value for customers,” said Lee Hyung-hee, president and COO at SK Telecom.

In July 2015, SK Telecom joined the LoRa Alliance to discuss the standardisation of the LPWA network as well as measures for the adoption and utilisation of the network. 

SK Telecom’s strategy coincides with an initiative to promote IoT by the Korean government. In particular, the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning decided to revise the maximum transmit power for the 900MHz frequency band, moving it from 10mW to 200mW.