South Korea’s biggest networks have been banned from signing up new customers or upgrading existing peeps for several weeks each, having broken regulations pertaining to handset subsidies.
And the timing couldn’t be worse, quite frankly, with the Samsung Galaxy S5 release date falling on April 11.
On Samsung’s home turf, SK Telecom is the largest network by customer base, and its ban comes into effect from April 5 until May 19. Ouch. So no Samsung Galaxy S5 sales for more than a month.
It’s not quite so bad for second place KT Corp, with its ban enforced from March 13 to April 26. Only a two-week wait there before it can get down to Samsung Galaxy S5-flavoured business.
Finally, third place LG UPlus has two periods of sanctions, from March 13 to April 4, and again from April 27 to May 18. At least it can flog the Samsung Galaxy S5 in the middle.
IM Investment & Securities analyst Lee Min-hee makes the frankly jaw-dropping deduction that “the operation suspension of mobile carriers could hit initial S5 sales”. NO. WAY.
Perhaps in a bid to soften the blow, Samsung is going for the hard sell in the US, with customers netting a whopping $600 worth of freebies when they buy a Galaxy S5.
“We are continually looking for the best partners to help us expand and enhance the mobile experience for our dedicated users,” yells Samsung’s JK Shin.
“The Galaxy S5 was designed to offer consumers the most advanced tool to help improve their everyday lives. These new partnerships perfectly compliment this mission with a comprehensive offering of some of the world’s best mobile resources to suit people’s active lives.”
Eh, and what do we get in the UK, wee man? Also, that's complement.