South Korea’s mobile operator LG Uplus has adopted a successful differentiation strategy through its AR and VR service portfolio in the country’s highly-competitive 5G race, according to a report by Strategy Analytics, a global consulting firm.
The report, as a case study on the operator’s 5G strategies and market execution, identified VR and AR services, which require higher download speeds compared to conventional video, as demonstrating the power of LG Uplus’s new network and giving consumers reasons to upgrade.
In order to seed the market by letting users sample the unique services, LG Uplus has been bundling VR headsets with selected plans.
Moreover, it offers a range of VR and AR content, including Pro Baseball, Golf, Idol Live, AR Live, and VR live, delivering an immersive 5G media experience to a range of consumers.
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According to a consumer survey conducted in June by Kantar Korea, the ratio of choosing Uplus for the company’s competitive 5G services (including AR and VR) was two to three times higher than that of its competitors.
Phil Kendall, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, said that VR and AR content fit South Korean cultural and sporting interests well and will “work well in other markets in those customer segments with strong affiliations to celebrities or social media stars.”
The report concludes that, in a highly competitive market where differentiation on network quality and pricing is difficult, LG Uplus has successfully used AR and VR content both as a compelling case for business-to-customer 5G services and as a source of exclusive content driving customer acquisition.
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The operator launched its 5G network in early April, and has more than 800,000 5G customers to date. In cooperation with Huawei, the leading 5G provider, it has delivered more than 25,000 5G base stations across the country. The two companies have been working together to develop ultra-HD video and VR services based on 5G networks and to enable new 5G commercial applications.
According to a recent report from RootMetrics by IHS Markit, LG Uplus’s 5G network stood out with the most consistent speed performance among all South Korean mobile operators.
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