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View more articles by Dagyum Ji
Dagyum Ji is a senior NK News correspondent based in Seoul. She previously worked for Reuters TV.
North Korea’s leading electronics company recently launched the new “Phurun Hanul” (Blue Sky) smartphone brand, state-run online outlet Dawn reported this week.
The new smartphone, state media reported, made its debut at the 21st Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair last month.
The Phurun Hanul Corporation (Phurun Hanul Electronics JV Co., LTD), described in the article as “the best domestic information and technology corporation,” reportedly developed the product.
The company developed the “Phurun Hanul H1-type mobile phone… based on sufficient research” on the features of domestic and foreign-made smartphones and on listening to user feedback, it continued.
The new phone features a “5.5-inch display with high-resolution, fingerprint authentication technology and fast processing speed.”
The report particularly promotes the smartphone’s 6000 mAh battery, which is described as “maximum capacity.”
Users can charge it with other smartphones and electronic products, it adds.
“As users access and read various materials and use e-commerce services through the mobile communication network, they occasionally have an interest in the battery capacity of the mobile phone.”
The 38-year-old Lim Ryong Nam, described as a member of the development team, said the company worked to “develop a superior smartphone” based on customer feedback.
A brochure from the 21st Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair obtained by NK News provides more detailed information on the new smartphone.
The product is equipped with 1.3GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6753 processor manufactured by Taiwanese company MediaTek, the marketing reads, features 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, and comes with 8MP front-facing camera and 16MP rear camera.
“We develop and export independent products and program engines with strong research capabilities,” the catchline in the brochure says, though it does not elaborate.
The Phurun Hanul Corporation also reportedly provides “responsible and earnest” after-sales services in stores across the country, with the brochure listing contact information for “technical and repair services.”
Previous state media reports show that the company has a diverse product line, including an all-in-one desktop computer, laptops with detachable keyboards, LED TVs, and screen projectors.
In a separate article, the Dawn said the corporation recently launched a range of 50-inch and 55-inch flat or curved screen TVs.
North Korean companies appear to be increasingly scrambling to develop new smartphones, with several new models being reported in the past year.
The country’s Arirang Information Technology Exchange Company, for instance, has released two new smartphones since September, with the Arirang 161 and 171 models being released in relatively quick succession.
The company also reportedly runs a dedicated store on Pyongyang’s Ryomyong Street selling around 20 kinds of electronic products including TVs, computers, tablet PCs, audio speakers, and walkie-talkies, Dawn reported last December.
Last year also saw the DPRK’s Mangyongdae Information Technology Corporation release the Jindallae 3 smartphone, which state media reported is “versatile and multifunctional” and includes “various kinds of application programs necessary for people’s business and life.”
Edited by Oliver Hotham
Featured Image: Dawn