The Korea Times reports that the country’s VoIP subscriber base passed the three million mark earlier this month, up from 2.5 million at the end of 2008. ‘With the improvement in number portability policies, the number of VoIP users will rise by an even faster clip after May,’ said an official from the regulator, the Korea Communications Commission (KCC). Five million VoIP subscribers are expected by the end of 2009.
LG Dacom, which had only 336,000 traditional telephony users at the end of February, leads the VoIP market with 1.32 million subscribers, stretching its lead over Samsung Networks and KT Corp, who have around 400,000 each. Korea Cable Telecom (KCT) boasts 300,000 VoIP subscribers, while SK Broadband has just over 270,000.
KT Corp, the dominant traditional fixed line operator, has been reluctant in the past to commit to VoIP over concerns that PSTN to VoIP migration would result in a decline in overall ARPU. However, in the first two months of the year its PSTN customer base fell by more than 250,000 to 19.62 million, and its continued decline is thought to have finally convinced KT to embrace VoIP.