North Korea halts 3G mobile Internet service to foreign tourists

The 3G service to foreign tourists began earlier this month

North Korea has abruptly stopped offering 3G mobile Internet access to tourists entering the country, just three weeks after the service was launched, according to a travel company.

The country's sole 3G provider, Koryolink, halted the service because of a government decision, said Hannah Barraclough, the tourism manager for Beijing-based Koryo Tours. "There was no additional reason given. It's unclear if its permanent or not," she said.

Koryo Tours learned of the 3G stoppage last week, and posted about it on their company website. Foreigners living in North Korea, however, can still sign up for a 3G mobile plan, Barraclough said.

North Korea is notoriously known for its isolation from the rest of the world, and global Internet access is still banned to native residents. But while it's unclear why North Korea halted the mobile Internet access to tourists, the service was likely seldom used. "It was not particularly popular," Barraclough said. "It's very expensive and you don't want to drop 150 Euros (US$192) just to get a bit of Internet access."

Prices for the 3G service ranged from 150 Euros for 2GB of data, up to 400 Euros for 10GB, according to a report from China's state-run Xinhua News Agency.

A representative for Dandong Chosun Tour Service, also based in China, said it was unaware of the 3G service stoppage to tourists. But he said few foreigners visiting the country would even apply for it, given that most tend to stay in North Korea for only a few days.

3G provider Koryolink is a joint venture between Egypt-based Orascom Telecom Holding and the North Korean-owned Korea Post and Telecommunications Corporation. Orascom did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags governmentregulationinternettelecommunication3gKoryolinkOrascom Telecom HoldingKoryo Tours

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Kan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?