Thursday, January 22, 2009

Samsung Electonics' New Organization Chart

This is the New Orgization Chart of Samsung after the recent shakeup.

read more | digg story

Monday, December 17, 2007


This blog has moved to the new shiny domain Please come and visit so you don't miss any interesting insights about the Korean TMT sector!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Update on mobile TV in Korea

Today I have read an interesting article about the current situation on the Korean mobile TV market. It is motivated by the recent event, that TU Media has been able to acquire the simultaneous re-transmisson rights from MBC. This represents a big step for TU Media but it comes two and a half years too late.

As TU Media started operation mid 2005 it tried to acquire simultaneous re-transmission rights from broadcasters. This means that S-DMB viewers would be able to watch popular dramas and shows from fixed TV at the same time as on fixed TV. These contents are the most popular contents on both, fixed and mobile TV. However, at that time broadcasters were reluctant to share these contents because they wanted to use it for their own T-DMB service. Due to that S-DMB had to focus on other contents like sports and news. But the lack of “killer” contents from fixed TV hindered S-DMB development (as shown in the graphic above). Until today it had been able to acquire approximately 1.26 million subscribers. But according to TU Media they need approximately 2.5 million subscribers to be profitable. As a result, as reported two weeks ago, SK Telecom is thinking about limiting its involvement in TU Media.

But also T-DMB is struggling to build a profitable business. Despite more than seven million T-DMB devices in Korea the advertising revenues are marginal. Which partially is the result of very restrictive legislation on advertising but also broadcasters have failed to develop an attractive mobile advertising value proposition to make this channel more attractive for advertisers.

Experts are blaming policy for allowing two different mobile TV standards and businesses. Their competition was one of the main obstacles that mobile TV could not develop its full potential. So is mobile TV doomed in Korea? I do not think so, because consumers have embraced this new medium and it is very likely that broadcasters will take mobile TV more serious and endeavor to make mobile TV advertising more attractive for broadcasters. Until 2012 more than 20 million T-DMB devices are expected, so mobile TV has a future in Korea. In these days I am finalizing the mobile TV report I have been working on recently, so if you are interested in a more thourough analysis of the Korean mobile TV market contact me. I am eager to share it with everybody who might be interested.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

I'm moving...

I am about to move this blog to a new top domain site - Until it is up and running as I wish, feel free to drop by or give suggestions what you want to see on the new site.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Looking forward to meeting you@

The mobile and entertainment industries are increasingly merging and next week, from December 5th to 7th, a very interesting mobile and media business conference sponsored by Informa telecoms & media is about to take place in Suntec/Singapore. On Wednesday the “mobile TV Asia Summit” is taking place, followed by the two days event of “Mobile entertainment Media Asia 2007”.

The event is tagged: “Where media meets mobile in Asia”. So it combines two of the most dynamic industries with the most dynamic region. With South Korea and Japan Asia has the two most sophisticated mobile markets in the world and it also the growth motor of global mobile industry. Hence both events offer the chance to understand this region better as well as to learn and take best practices from the world’s leading. The event is an excellent platform for networking and to make business partnerships which will enhance any Asian market business strategy or benchmarking projects.

The conferences will feature agenda setting keynote sessions, and streams discussing the most exciting industry issues. It’s truly an honor for me to be selected to chair the “Mobile TV Asia Summit” on Wednesday December 5th. I will be the first to speak with the title, “Accelerating the Uptake of Mobile TV in Asia”. Afterwards I will be moderating the remaining sessions and discussions.

I sincerely hope to meet many of you interested and I look forward discussing with you.
For more information on the events visit here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

S-DMB and TU Media rumored to be in trouble

There are rumors in Korean press that SK Telecom is hesitant to inject more money in its S-DMB business and TU Media, because reaching the break-even is unlikely. Although subscribers have reached almost 1.3 million in September 2007 TU Media has generated only losses. Together with initial investments of about 250 million USD overall this venture could have cost SK Telecom more than 500 million USD since beginning of operation.

There are several factors for missing commercial success of S-DMB, some of them are:

1. Targeting the mass market SK Telecom has underestimated the importance of acquiring popular contents from terrestrial TV. Upon the launch of S-DMB it had been too naïve and expected to get rights for retransmitting contents from the broadcasters. However with T-DMB in the pipeline they had been reluctant to share these contents.

2. Launching the satellite (it had been launched in cooperation with a Japanese company MBCo) and building the infrastructure almost by itself required significant funding, estimated to be about 250 million USD.

3. When entering the market it relied too much on existing skills and thus pursued a subscription based model, making a success on the mass market very unlikely.

4. Also Korean government is not free from blame. It issued licenses for mobile TV to two different parties with a diametrically different approach. Subscription based S-DMB and free T-DMB. Due to this both sides could not exploit the full market potential of mobile TV in Korea.

5. Being direct competitors in the mobile market KTF and LG have been reluctant to promote S-DMB, because it is a service of a direct competitor.

Although TU Media has not been a commercial success it can provide very valuable lessons to interested players in the mobile TV market, especially in the Western world where mobile TV is about to be launched.

1. Content is king – it has to be tailored to your targeted audience else your business is doomed. If targeting the mass market popular formats from TV is crucial.

2. Initial investments have to be balanced carefully and should not burden the future development too much.

3. Especially as an MNOs may not underestimate the importance of the right content.

These are just some of my thoughts. I am currently working on a report about the lessons learnt from two years of mobile TV market in Korea in which these things will be elaborated in more detail. Once it is finished I am willing to share it with everybody who is interested. So please do not hesitate to contact me.

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Korean playground is virtual

A Korean gaming news website published results of a survey among young internet users. The survey has been conducted by two websites and among 86.000 surfers aged 8-13. is something like Second Life for children, whereas is a website of a cable TV program comparable to Cartoon Network. Despite a likely bias in the survey population some of the results are fascinating and frightening at the same time.

Approximately 62% of the participants use the internet 1-2 hours a day. This may not sound a lot to you but in Korea even young school children return from school around 6 p.m. or even later. Subtracting time for having dinner and eventual homework these two hours represent probably 80%-90% of their free time during one day. This is underlined by the fact that 92% surf from home. What do the kids do online on their virtual playground? Well the same thing we used to do on real playgrounds, i.e. playing (39% play online games) and meeting friends (27% work on their “Minihompi” or visit their friends’ “Minihompis”). In connection to that it is not surprising that CyWorld is the second most popular website (29%) just after naver (57%).

This trend underlines the appearance of a truly digital youth. However in Korea it gets an almost dangerous dimension which ultimately will further increase problems like internet addiction. On the other hand this early embrace of the internet and its virtual worlds is a good explanation why Koreans usually are regarded as tech savvy, which enhances the development of new services and businesses in the TMT sector.

Addition to Friday’s posting

As a supplement of Friday’s posting I have found the official video press release on – another interesting technology related blog about Korea. Have a look at this video, which shows the video phone application in action.