2G phones back with a vengeance?

Someone casually pulls out his phone from his pocket during a coffee break in between a series of morning meetings, peers at it for a while before flipping open the lid to start talking into the mouthpiece.
At the gesture, several of his colleagues look on in surprise ― shock even ― and they venture to ask him, “how in the world can you still be holding onto such a phone?”

Flip phones are usually feature phones, also called second-generation or 2G phones running on the previous second-generation communication networks, and it seemed like their days had been numbered when smartphones hit the Korean landscape several years ago.

Currently, up to three-fifths of the Korean population uses smartphones, with computer-like operating systems that run high-tech applications for playing games, finding directions, juggling schedules and anything else designed to make life that much more convenient and entertaining. Yet up to 20 million people in the country still use a feature phone, and are refusing to switch. In fact, many are demanding new designs for their “outdated” phones. “We don’t want to switch to smartphones, but we do want our feature phones to look hipper,” said one blogger who is a member of the blog, “For a united “010.” The mobile prefix “010” is the first used for smartphones, and began use with 2G feature phones in 2004.

For full article, see Korea Herald.

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