SEOUL, Jan. 30 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's smartphone imports from China surged to a record high last year, a sign of a growing number of people there being connected to the net, according to data released Friday.
North Korea brought in US$82.8 million worth of smartphones from China in 2014, almost double the amount recorded a year earlier, according to the Seoul-based Korea International Trade Association.
It marked the largest volume since 2007, when related data were introduced.
Imports of portable data-processing devices, including laptops, also jumped 16 percent on-year to $23 million in 2014 despite a 3-percent decline in the North's overall imports from China in the year.
Around 10 percent of the communist nation's 24-million residents reportedly use smartphones, with its 3G network run by Koryolink, a joint venture with an Egyptian company, Orascom Telecom.
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