South Korean carriers increase presence in the smart factory field
South Korea’s telecommunications operators have launched new smart factory solutions with the aim of helping manufacturers overcome the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Korean news service Yonhap reported.
SK Telecom, the country’s largest mobile operator, released a subscription-based smart factory solution for small and medium-sized manufacturers that optimizes their equipment maintenance.
The carrier said it aims to support small and medium-sized manufacturers with affordable smart factory capabilities to boost automation and improve operational efficiency
The carrier said it is offering free six-month trials of the cloud-based Metatron Grand View service to 100 companies. The new service runs on the operator’s Metatron IoT platform.
The 5G-powered service places sensors onto manufacturing equipment, which collect and analyze data to calculate maintenance periods.
SK Telecom said that the new system can help manufacturers reduce maintenance expenses by 15% and could extend the lifespan of equipment by more than 20%.
The telco also said the platform enables manufacturing firms to quickly deploy services at facilities, while a monthly subscription reduces the initial cost burden. SK Telecom is also offering customers smart factory operations training and IoT terminal installation.
Meanwhile, rival operator KT provided an industrial robot to local auto parts maker Parkwon last week, according to the report.
This robot for packaging processes, controlled by the carrier’s 5G network, can complete tasks faster than human workers, according to KT. The robot will reportedly be able to reduce packaging times by 28%.
Last month, LG Uplus signed a partnership with partnered with the city of Gumi to deploy its 5G network in the city’s industrial complex and offer its smart factory solutions to small- and mid-sized companies.
LG Uplus is also planning to provide its 5G-based security service that automatically detects workplace safety risks, such as sudden temperature changes, at LG Electronics’s factory in Cheongju, south of Seoul, next month.
South Korea rolled out the world’s first commercial 5G network on April 3, 2019, with the nation’s three carriers — SK Telecom, KT and LG Uplus — aggressively promoting the new service to consumers.
South Korea ended May with almost 6.9 million subscribers in the 5G segment.
SK Telecom, South Korea’s largest mobile carrier said it had some 3.11 million 5G customers in May, accounting for 45.2% of the total.
KT’s 5G subscriber number stood at 2.08 million as of the end of May, followed by LG Uplus, with 1.68 million, the latest ministry data showed.
The Korean government recently said that local operators had already deployed over 115,000 5G base stations across the country.