Regulatory revision opens up South Korean handset market

Good news for South Koreans who love choice; bad news for LG and Samsung... sort of. For those unaware, South Korea is currently under a rule that requires cellphones that connect to the internet to "use domestic software that standardizes network access." In theory, the regulation makes life easier for local software developers, but in reality, it has enabled locally-based LG and Samsung to combine for around 90% of all handset sales in the nation. Moving forward, however, the Korea Communications Commission intends to modify the barrier (effective next April) so that cellphone operators can use "any type of phone" they choose. We suspect three cheers for competition are in order.