Foreigners who come to North Korea will be allowed to bring their cellphones with them starting on January 7, a technician with the Korean-Egyptian joint venture company Koryolink said on Sunday.
"Just fill a registration form at the Customs with your phone' s IMEI number, you can bring your own phones to DPRK," said the Egyptian technician to the Xinhua News Agency.
"If you want to make international calls, the WCDMA 3G mobile phone owners can purchase our SIM card, which costs 50 euro," he added.
For decades, foreigners visiting North Korea had to leave their cellphones at the Customs and pick them up on departure.
"We have tried hard to negotiate with the Korean security side, and got the approval recently," said the Egyptian, noting that "it has nothing to do with the Google trip."
In fact, foreigners still cannot really use the Koryolink 3G network, with no Internet access allowed yet. The Koryolink staff said that the mobile Internet service for foreigners will be opened soon.
There are 1.8 million Koreans using 3G cellphones across the country since 2008, which supports MMS and video call. But their mobile phones can neither make international calls nor connect to the Internet. Furthermore, Koreans and Foreigners can not make calls between each other due to their SIM cards set by different segments.