Upcoming Phone Subsidy Reforms have Korean Retailers resorting to Extreme Measures

We've all encountered pushy salesmen at one time or another, whether its some call centre operative cold-calling you to tell you about some product you don't need, or a salesman in a bricks and mortar retail shop that will not take no for an answer. It's somewhat annoying, but usually you can either just put the phone down on them or leave the store. But what about if you are walking past the store, and the salesman grabs your phone to force you to enter the store just to retrieve your property? It sounds unreal, doesn't? But its a growing occurrence across South Korea, where salesmen have resorted to these strong-arm tactics against women as reported by the Korean TV station SBS News.

How do they do it? Well, as you can see in the video below, the salesman waits for a target, preferably a young woman, and walks up to her, employing blocking techniques such as the hand on the shoulder, holding the woman's hand to keep her talking, or even straight-up body blocking, preventing the target from moving past. It doesn't stop there either, sometimes the salesmen grab the victims by the arm to physically drag them into the shop, or they even grab the woman's phone, taking the time to peruse her phone while refusing to hand it back unless she goes into the store with them.

South Korea's government have made major reforms to handset subsidies which are due to come into effect in October, resulting in retailers taking increasingly desperate actions when it comes to signing up new customers. The countries carriers have been caught practicing dirty tactics before, in April this year, they were prevented from signing up new customers for 45 days because they had violated the maximum amount they could legally offer as a phone subsidy.

And despite local police departments being cognisant of the carriers dastardly sales tactics, and urging the public to report such occurrences, as yet there have been no consequences for either the retailer or the carriers.

Here in the UK, I couldn't imagine the phone retailers ever getting away with such brazen methods, but there are still some decidedly shady sales people about, selling unknowledgeable folk the latest Galaxy S5, but what they fail to mention is that they've sold the customer an S5 Mini with an expensive contract, instead of its higher-specced model. What are your experiences with shady mobile phone sellers? Let us know in the comments below or at our Google Plus page.



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About the Author

Peter Holden

Senior Staff Writer
I've been an Android fan ever since owning an HTC Hero, with the Dell Streak being my first phablet. I currently carry a Samsung Galaxy S5 and a Tab S 8.4 LTE around. When not immersed in the world of Android and gadgets, I'm an avid sports fan, enjoy travelling(currently living in the UK), and like all South Africans, I love a good BBQ (Braai).
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