People take photographs during a launching ceremony for SK Telecom's 5G service, in Seoul, South Korea, April 3, 2019. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji
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South Korea will become the first country to commercially launch fifth-generation (5G) services Friday as it rolls out the latest wireless technology with Samsung Electronics' new 5G-enabled smartphone Galaxy S10 . With one of the world's top smartphone penetration rates, South Korea is in a race with China, the United States and Japan to market 5G, hoping the technology will spur breakthrough in fields such as smart cities and autonomous cars, and drive up its economic growth that slowed to a six-year low in 2018 .Smaller local rival LG Electronics plans to release its 5G smartphone in South Korea later this month.Among South Korea's top three telecom operators, SK Telecom and KT Corp do not use Huawei equipment for 5G.
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