“North Korea’s telecommunications environment is virtually difficult to change… Possibility to introduce automatic switching method”

North Koreans buying mobile phones. / Photo = Seogwang homepage capture

Although he declared the improvement of the North Korean communication environment, it was predicted that due to poor conditions, rapid development such as next-generation mobile communication would be scarce and only partially improving existing facilities. Sources say that the telephone exchange method used by the operator is automatically changed.

In a call with Daily NK on the 17th, an internal North Korean source said, “The communication system of provinces, cities, and counties is still using the communication system through the operator that was used over 50 years ago.” “The (8th) party conference The instructions mean to change it to the latest technology.”

This means that the ‘technological renewal of the telecommunications infrastructure (infrastructure)’, which the chairman of the State Council Chairman Kim Jong-un mentioned at the 8th party conference held last month, was an order to change the local telephone exchange method from manual to automatic.

According to the’Status and Implications of North Korean Wired and Wireless Communication Services’ by Kim Yun-do, Associate Research Fellow of the Institute for Information and Communication Policy, the telephone exchange method in North Korea is an automatic exchange for metropolitan cities including Pyongyang, and manual exchange for small and medium-sized cities and rural areas Are adopted.

Accordingly, it is analyzed that North Korea is trying to improve the call connection speed and improve quality by replacing communication equipment in a local small town with an automatic exchange type.

Meanwhile, the source said that the’quick transition to the next generation communication’, which Chairman Kim mentioned on the same day, is a rather difficult situation at the moment.

Sources said, “Currently, mobile communication in Korea (Chosun) is poor enough to be considered as staying in the 1st and 2nd generations. In this situation, the Internet (Internet) is not working well, but it is meaningless to say that the 4th generation or 5th generation is I said.

It is known that North Korea is currently using 3G mobile communication. However, the mobile communication environment is not so good that there is a shadow area for calls or it is difficult to send multimedia text messages.

Sources say that it is quite early to mention next-generation mobile telecommunications in a situation where the modernization of the facilities and equipment currently in use is also struggling.

A source said, “It is almost impossible to manufacture and distribute the latest communication equipment in-house. For this reason, equipment for environmental improvement needs to be imported from China, and the conditions are not good at this time.”

North Korea is known to have imported automatic telephone switchboards and equipment used for mobile communication mostly from China. However, due to the novel coronavirus infection (Corona 19), the border is blocked and the introduction of advanced electronic devices due to sanctions against North Korea is prohibited, making it difficult to secure equipment.

This raises the prospect that the communication environment improvement project that the North Korean authorities had tried to promote with confidence may be sluggish.

A source said, “The diversification and diversification of mobile communications mentioned in the Supreme People’s Assembly is also a story of increasing the types of handphones (cell phones),” he said. “It is possible to increase the number of telecommunications operators in the future, but it is not possible at this time.”

Meanwhile, it is reported that the communication environment improvement project is being carried out by the Institute of Post Office and Kimchaek University of Technology.

A source explained, “The communication environment improvement project is in charge of the post office” and “The place that develops communication technology is the research center under the post office and the research center at the Kim Chaek Industrial University.”

In this regard, in 2018, Chosun Central Broadcasting reported that the communication modernization project was being conducted at the Post Office Information Research Center, centering on graduates of Kim Chaek Industrial University.

Source: DailyNK by www.dailynk.com.

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