North Korea claims an Android phone is made in Pyongyang

by: Nate SwannerAugust 12, 2013
The Arirang device, said to be made in North Korea

The Arirang device, said to be made in North Korea

North Korea is touting a home-grown smartphone, the AS1201 Arirang. While we have no news to offer in regard to specs, it’s interesting that North Korea is claiming to have a smartphone built in Pyongyang, capital of North Korea.

While many are skeptical of the device’s origins, what is known is that its using Android. Much like the tablet we showed you a few weeks ago, this device is pretty locked down. It comes with an app “produced in Korean style”, and is said to have a touch screen and “high pixels”. Like the tablet, it restricts web usage to the North Korean Intranet.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un paid a visit to the May 11 factory that “makes” the devices, but some are skeptical of the pictures being released. In the factory, workers are shown with their dear leader and finished devices, but no actual images of the phones being produced were shared. It’s believed that the devices are produced in China, and shipped to May 11 for final inspection.

Most believe this was a show of patriotism for North Korea. Of course, if the devices aren’t actually made in the DPRK, all that patriotism is for naught. Then again, it may be the first step towards a more open North Korea. For the sake of the people that reside there, we hope that’s the case.

  • Luka Mlinar

    They didn’t close it down, the rest of the world did. Political arguments aside AA should make it their mission to get their hands on this phone ASAP. I want to compare it to a Sony Tipo :D

    • RaptorOO7

      Call ups Dennis Rodman he can work out a trade with Lilttle Kim for Lil Kim.

  • RaptorOO7

    We all know this was either made in China or by forced slave labor in Pyongyang. I can’t wait to hear the specs. 240×320 display, 1GB storage, 256MB RAM runs OS 1.6 donut.

    • sivkai

      I think China is more likely.

    • Luka Mlinar

      Looks like ICS to me :/

  • Ryan Castle

    Meanwhile Kim Jong Un is rocking the LG G2.

    • Luka Mlinar

      Gold plated iPhone? :D

      • Bryan Z


    • Roberto Evans

      More like the iPhone 5C


      Wasn’t it an HTC?

  • Tran Nguyen

    I hope that Google is still remember their slogan “Don’t Be Evil”. That’s why I hate political @ government. Money is money!

  • Grman Rodriguez

    It looks like a Huawei Asced P1 XL

  • Danny

    hey guys you’re right it won’t be the best smartphone on earth , but don’t you think that it’s a great thing from a country like North Korea (which is economically besieged by Western countries) to make an Android powered Smartphone
    Just an opinion

  • Abdel Aziz Farhi

    Its not that hard to make an Android Smart phone. I live in Algeria and there is a firm here called Condor. It produces an Android based smart phone called the C-1

    They even make Tablets now and some of their tablets are actually good with reasonable prices. One of their tablets is called the C-Tab 785R. runs on a Quad core 1.5 Ghz CPU, 1GB of RAM, a 7.85″ TFT LCD Screen – IPS, resolution : 1024×768 and comes with Android 4.1.1 out of the box upgrade-able to 4.1.2.

    They have other tablets with dual core CPUs, bigger screens and 2GBs of RAM. another smartphone is coming out and they promis us that its going to be much better