SK Telecom plans $84 million investment for IoT expansion

SK Telecom and first Tri-band LTE-A Service
SK Telecom
has decided to make an investment of KRW 100 billion or approx. $84 million over two years to expand Internet of Things (IoT) business.

The Korean telecom network operator plans to build a nationwide Low-Power Wide-Area Network (LPWAN) within this year, develop IoT-dedicated modules, and upgrade its IoT platform ThingPlug to offer innovative IoT services.

“Through our IoT strategy that encompasses network, platform and devices, SK Telecom will lead the growth of the IoT industry,” said Lee Hyung-hee, president and chief operating officer of SK Telecom.

Korean Government’s e Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning decided to revise the maximum transmit power for the 900MHz frequency band from 10mW to 200mW to nurture the IoT industry. Such move is expected to help telecom network operators overcome limitations caused by the low transmit power and to secure the basis for many new IoT services.

LPWA technologies will enable SK Telecom to focus on new business models such as metering, location tracking and monitoring and control services as it saves battery power and cost for connectivity.

SK Telecom will set up IoT Control Center to manage network equipment and IoT devices. The IoT Control Center will monitor real-time status of the nationwide IoT network and all connected devices to optimize the operation.

Moreover, SK Telecom will develop IoT-dedicated modules that can be embedded in the IoT devices. It also plans to open the Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) of these modules to third party companies. The company will provide IoT modules, free of charge, to allow SMEs to test their services.

Vina Krishnan
[email protected]