Two major presidential hopefuls, Moon Jae-in of the Democratic Party of Korea and Ahn Cheol-soo of the People's Party, have shown many differences in policies. They even differ in their choice of smartphones as the former uses a Samsung phone while the latter loves Apple's iPhone.
Moon, the leading candidate in the May 9 presidential election, uses Samsung Electronics' Galaxy S7. The smartphone was Samsung's former flagship handset until the Korean tech giant unveiled its latest phone ― the Galaxy S8 ― last month.
Samsung launched the S7 and S7 Edge in March 2016 and sold about 50 million units last year alone, as the lineup had to work overtime to fill the void left by its jumbo smartphone, the Galaxy Note 7 that was recalled late last year due to battery fire issues.
The Moon camp said Wednesday there is no specific reason he chose the Samsung smartphone.
Earlier this year, Moon had a picture taken showing him using a smartphone at the National Assembly and it was the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 released in 2014, according to an official of the smartphone industry.
Ahn, Moon's biggest rival, carries an Apple iPhone ― although which model he uses remains unknown.
"Apple's iPhone is a smartphone invented by an innovator," an official of Ahn's camp said.
Ahn, a software mogul-turned-politician, has often shown his respect for Apple founder Steve Jobs.
In a TV interview in January, he said one of his role models is Jobs. In addition, in December 2015 when he left the New Politics Alliance for Democracy that he co-founded amid a power struggle with Moon, he likened himself to Jobs.
Jobs was forced out of Apple in 1985 as the board sided with CEO John Sculley, who was recruited by Jobs himself. Jobs returned to Apple in 1997, thus reviving the then-moribund company with a series of innovative products including the iPod, iPhone and iPad.
Liberty Korea Party presidential candidate Hong Joon-pyo, coming in third in most public polls, also uses a Samsung phone ― the Galaxy S6 released in 2015.
"The Galaxy phone is easy to use," a representative of the Hong camp said.
The phone boasted the industry's first wireless-charging batteries and Samsung's mobile payment system ― Samsung Pay ― set for local debut in the second half of the year.
The camp officials of Rep. Yoo Seong-min running on the ticket of the Bareun Party were not available for information on what smartphone he uses.
In the United States, a smartphone used by its head of state gained attention earlier this year.
U.S. President Donald Trump was found to use an old, unsecured Galaxy S3 smartphone, rolled out by Samsung Electronics in 2012, facing calls to trade in his unsecured handset for a locked-down, encrypted device approved by the Secret Service.