The government's IT839 strategy, a plan to develop eight important IT services, three infrastructure zones, and nine key IT industrial sectors, has the ultimate goal of propelling Korea's economic growth beyond the level of $20,000 per capita.
The domestic IT industry, which comes from very humble beginnings, has become one of the global powerhouses in the last 20 years. The nation is equipped with world-class worldclass IT infrastructure in high-speed Internet, mobile telecoms and other sectors. Based on broadband networks and IT technology, the domestic industry dominates global markets in semiconductors, mobile phones, TFTLCDs, digital TVs and Internet games. The introduction of new services to create demand, the building of infrastructure to use the services and the securing the production capability of equipment and devices have combined to bestow global leadership. Lately, the domestic IT industry has witnessed its second growth phase taking shape and it is creating new business sectors by breaking boundaries of products with ever-evolving broadband networks and digital convergence. In order to develop growth momentum as a driving force for the national development, the government decided to promote the IT839 strategy, which will make unprecedented service introduction and technology development possible.
This strategy is designed to create new demand in eight new IT services such as mobile Internet. It is also fostering the construction of three new infrastructure investment projects, including the Broadband Convergence Network (BcN), and supporting nine new manufacturing industries to drive growth.
8 New Service Areas : The government has selected eight new service areas to develop: WiBro (Wireless Broadband), DMB (Digital Multimedia Broadcasting), Home Networking Service, Telematics, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) Utilization, W-CDMA, Nationwide Digital TV and VoIP Phones.
The WiBro service is a portable Internet service which makes Internet access possible at any time and any place. The government approved timing and requirements for mobile Internet service in late June and plans to start commercial service from 2006. It is expected that the service will attract eight million users, bringing $2.68 billion in sales and 40,000 new jobs by 2010.
DMB is to provide a variety of content such as music, messages and moving images through mobile TV and PDAs in order to meet the rising demand for mobile multimedia services. The satellite DMB and terrestrial DMB services will be available in the capital area by the end of 2004, and will expand to other areas by 2006 when channels will be secured.
Nationwide, the DMB market will reach $2 billion by 2015, and will be responsible for the creation of $3 billion in new production and 34,000 jobs. The home network service provide is will build a future home environment that provides multilateral services by integrating various home appliances into one network. The government intends to distribute home network systems to 500,000 households this year and to 10 million households or 60 percent of the total by 2007.
Trial projects will be pursued this year to advance the implementation and tight cooperation between participating companies and infrastructure building will be supported positively. At the same time, the government is running a "Ubiquitous Dream Exhibition Hall," which will move around the country, to showcase the latest technology, such as Ipv6, the next-generation Internet protocol. The government also will have the home network industry explore the global market, estimated to reach $100 billion by 2007, more aggressively, and expects production inducement effects of $12billion. Last, but not least, the government is striving to promote Telematics, W-CDMA, RFID, nationwide DTV and Internet Telephony services which are in their fledgling phases.
3 Major Advanced Infrastructure Areas : The government has designated three advanced infrastructure areas so that it could set up the latest network infrastructure for wired and wireless communications, broadcasting and the Internet. The government plans to creating invest $1.739 billion through 2007 for the u-Sensor Network (USN), under which electronic tags (RFID) will be attached to broadband networks (BcN) and all the other targeted service areas and information recognition and management is possible on the Internet and the next-generation Internet protocol (Ipv6). Especially, the government plans to set up a master plan to pursue trial projects this year for the u-Sensor Network, the core area of ubiquitous computing, for the purpose of utilizing "u-Life" in real life by 2010. For this, many applications, ranging from agricultural and livestock management, through environmental, and transportation, to distribution and logistics, will be adopted, and several promising ones with enormous rippling effects across the board will be chosen as trial services to create the market as early as possible.
9 New Growth Driving Areas : The nine new areas will be chosen as catalysts for the growth of the nation's IT industry. The nine are next-generation mobile telecommunications, digital TV, home networks, IT SOC (system on chip), nextgeneration PCs, embedded software, digital content, telematics and intelligent robots. The government will channel $2.174 billion into the projects through 2007 with the aim of creating $285 billion worth of new production in Korea.
The government's IT839 project is part of its efforts to consolidate the domestic IT industry's world leadership. It also keeps abreast with the u-Korea strategy that the government has promoted over the last few years. The IT839 strategy is a practical project to carry out concrete businesses systematically for adapting the ubiquitous computer environment to daily life.