Reuters reports that the iPhone has gained final regulatory approval in South Korea, paving the way for a release there in the very near future.

Korea Communications Commission said in a statement on Wednesday it would grant Apple's South Korean unit a licence that allows collecting information on locations and provide services such as map, phone locating and related marketing.

Exactly when the iPhone will launch there is not yet confirmed, but reports have suggested that it may be before the end of the month.

KT Corp, the country's No. 2 mobile carrier which has been negotiating with Apple to introduce iPhone, said sales could start soon but did not provide a date for the launch.

Korean newspapers said iPhone's sales could start as early as late next week.

It is not entirely clear how this regulatory approval differs from a similar approval reported in September, but today's development certainly appears to be the final step needed before the device can launch there.

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