SK Telecom planning commercial LTE network for next year

South Korean networks -- which have historically gone neck-and-neck with Japanese ones for deploying ridiculously advanced tech before anyone else -- are just a touch slow on the LTE uptake, though not by much. SKT is looking to deploy its first commercial LTE network sometime in 2011 in Seoul on its way to a nationwide rollout in 2013, which means they'll be trailing Verizon and TeliaSonera, just to name a couple (to be fair, archrival KT is apparently on track for a late 2010 launch, so this year's 4G hopes aren't entirely lost). In the meantime, SKT hopes to take some pressure off its 3G infrastructure by beefing up its WiFi footprint, a tactic similar to the one AT&T's been using stateside for a while now. Given the choice, we'd still take LTE over WiFi... but hey, a few hotspots never hurt anyone.