After much delay, the iPhone is finally coming to South Korea. The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) had been requiring handsets to use the locally-built WIPI mobile platform. Earlier this week, that changed:
"...considering global industry trends toward the use of general-purpose mobile operating systems, we concluded that there was a need to allow carriers the freedom to decide whether to use WIPI or not,'' said Shin Yong-sub, the director of KCC's policy bureau.
This restriction prevented many foreign manufacturers, like Apple, from selling handsets in South Korea. So, what happens now? First off, it looks like carriers KTF and SK Telecom will be handling the iPhone in South Korea. Finally, would-be customers will still have to wait until next spring, as the rule requiring WIPI will be effective until April of 2009. But that's better than "never," right?