EU, South Korea join forces for faster mobile service

June 16, 2014
The European Union on Monday said it was teaming up with South Korea to develop a next-generation 5G wireless service quick enough to download full-length movies to a smartphone in seconds

The European Union on Monday said it was teaming up with South Korea to develop a next-generation 5G wireless service quick enough to download full-length movies to a smartphone in seconds.

The deal is a big one for the EU, which was a leader in the early days of but has trailed Asia and North America since the rise of the smartphone in providing the most up-to-date services.

5G technology—set to be 1,000 times faster than the 4G services currently available—is in the early stages of development, but governments and technology giants are pouring billions into it so as not to be left behind.

By tying up with the South Koreans, the EU hopes to restore its onetime standing and not suffer from the fragmentation that has hampered the rollout of 4G technology across the 28-nation bloc.

South Korea—home to smartphone giant Samsung—is investing heavily in 5G. In January, the government announced a 1.6 trillion won ($1.6 billion, 1.2 billion euro) plan to build a new network.

China, the US, Britain and Germany have all announced big 5G projects.

In Monday's agreement, the EU and South Korea agreed to work towards a 5G global standard, which if achieved could significantly accelerate the worldwide development of the technology.

The deal also sets up a partnership between private consortiums that include all the biggest players in the European and Korean markets.

South Korea is renowned for being at the forefront of Internet technology with broadband speeds that consistently out-pace those in Europe or the United States.

5G, which will allow users to download an 800-megabyte movie file in one second, "will become the new lifeblood of the digital economy and digital society," said EU Commissioner for the digital agenda, Neelie Kroes.

"This is the first time ever that public authorities have joined together in this way, with the support of private industry, to push forward the process of standardisation," she added.

Explore further: Samsung announces 5G data breakthrough

Related Stories

Samsung announces 5G data breakthrough

May 13, 2013

Samsung Electronics said Monday it had successfully tested super-fast fifth-generation (5G) wireless technology that would eventually allow users to download an entire movie in one second.

SK Telecom introduces world's fist LTE-A network

June 26, 2013

South Korea's SK Telecom announced Wednesday the launch of a new generation mobile network that offers speeds twice that of its existing long term evolution (LTE) network and 10 times that of 3G services.

EU lags behind on 4G: official

July 25, 2013

EU member states should do more, and faster, to introduce next-generation 4G mobile phone services if Europe is to reap the benefits of the new technology.

S. Korea to spend $1.5 bn on 5G 'movie-in-a-second' service

January 22, 2014

South Korea, already one of the most wired countries on earth, Wednesday announced a 1.6 trillion won ($1.5 billion) plan to roll out a next-generation 5G wireless service quick enough to download full-length films in a second.

US general says SKorea databases hacked

June 5, 2014

The top U.S. military official in South Korea said a hacking incident might have compromised the personal information of thousands of South Koreans employed by the American command.

Recommended for you

Internet giants race to faster mobile news apps

October 4, 2015

US tech giants are turning to the news in their competition for mobile users, developing new, faster ways to deliver content, but the benefits for struggling media outlets remain unclear.

Radio frequency 'harvesting' tech unveiled in UK

September 30, 2015

An energy harvesting technology that its developers say will be able to turn ambient radio frequency waves into usable electricity to charge low power devices was unveiled in London on Wednesday.

Professors say US has fallen behind on offshore wind power

September 29, 2015

University of Delaware faculty from the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE), the College of Engineering and the Alfred Lerner School of Business and Economics say that the U.S. has fallen behind in offshore wind ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.