SK Telecom is planning to cooperate with Samsung Electronics and Kakao in artificial intelligence (AI). It is a way to combine capabilities of each company but freely work on brands and applications.
It also announced a plan to change its company name to establish its identity as a comprehensive ICT (Information Communication Technology) company.
"Global companies such as Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple are already working together, but Korean companies are playing games separately," SK Telecom CEO Park Jung-ho said at a press conference for CES 2020 held in Las Vegas on Jan. 8. “We will propose AI ultra-cooperation with South Korea's Samsung Electronics and Kakao," he said.
"We talked about AI cooperation with Samsung Electronics CEO Ko Dong-jin at CES," Park said. "We agreed on ways to combine AI capabilities with each other, although we have freedom over each brand or app."
“While Samsung Electronics will not put SK Telecom’s "who" instead of AI Bixby in Galaxy, the current form of AI is divided,” he said, reiterating that “It is super-cooperation for each company to cooperate on a global standard without taking pride.”
He also expressed willingness to change his company name. The move is aimed at revealing its identity as a ‘comprehensive ICT’ company, not a telecommunication business.
"Currently, sales of telecommunication are 60% of the total, and if it falls below 50%, we believe that we are at the starting point where we can change our name instead of SK Telecom," Park said. "This will be a name that contains the meaning of a comprehensive ICT company such as ‘SK Hyper Connector.’"
He then said that the company will introduce a "dual OS" management system that will use new ICTs such as mobile communications, media, security and commerce as its two growth engines this year to boost its corporate value.
In fact, SK Telecom signed a strategic partnership with Kakao, South Korea's largest mobile company, in October last year by swapping 300 billion won worth of shares. In the media sector, it launched Wave, the largest indigenous OTT service, in September last year in partnership with the three terrestrial broadcasters.
At the CES, Park met with Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jessy to discuss 5G MEC-based cloud business.
On the previous day, it signed a business agreement with global electric vehicle company Byton to cooperate comprehensively regarding electric vehicles that will be released in South Korea. Byton is an electric car company established in 2017 by former global carmakers such as BMW and Nissan.