The Hong Kong-based expert Kao and his two American counterparts were honoured for creating the two tools which, propagated and aided the present Information Technology revolution.
"This year's Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded for two scientific achievements that have helped to shape the foundations of today's networked societies.
"They have created many practical innovations for everyday life and provided new tools for scientific exploration," it said.
Kao, a British national but based in Hong Kong, was awarded half of the prize for 'groundbreaking achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibers for optical communication.'
Boyle and Smith shared the other half of the prize for 'the invention of an imaging semiconductor circuit -- the CCD sensor," or the charge-coupled device, which is the "electronic eye' of the digital camera.
Laureates receive a gold medal, a diploma and 10 million Swedish kronor (1.42 million US dollars, 980,000 euros).
The prize ceremony would be held in Stockholm and Oslo on Thursday, Dec 10.