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Luna Smartphone Backed by SK Telecom Is Shaking South Korean Market

by Woody Oh | Sep 23, 2015

Luna-branded smartphone, launched recently in South Korea early September this year, is quietly stepping on the accelerator on the current Korean smartphone market dynamics shift from premium-centric (previously) to mid to high-tier market growth, mostly due to the subsidy-constraints regulation which went into effect around one year ago.

The Luna smartphone is manufactured by Foxconn as a contractor while SK Telecom, the biggest mobile operator in South Korea, is taking the full ownership for distributing this nice-looking and metal-unibody device at relatively affordable device price of US$300 in wholesale. Only three weeks has passed since launch, but Luna is clearly gaining market traction in South Korean market, majorly boosted by the "relatively" competitive price, and compelling specifications and services.

According to our country share report by quarter, 'Global Smartphone Vendor Marketshare for 15 Countries: Q2 2015', published by Handset Country Share Tracker (HCST) service, the strict subsidy-controlled regulation put in place in South Korea for over a year now is estimated to benefit Apple (all premium-tier) and others (mostly non-premium tier) in terms of vendor market share. Data collected by us illustrate that Apple and others grew more than two-fold between Q3 2014 and Q2 2015 (after the regulation) against the previous one year before.  

In the meantime, this changed subsidy rule has had unfavorable effect on Pantech, a small-sized vendor and now out of business by "Pantech" brand due to some financial issues.

This extensive country share report is accessible at this link, available to our HCST clients.

Luna_SK Telecom

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