PYONGYANG, North Korea, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- North Korea has announced its first home-grown smartphone, although Western experts have expressed doubts about its actual origins.
The Arirang handset, described by North Korean state media as a "hand phone," was shown to leader Kim Jong-un during a factory tour, the BBC reported Wednesday.
The country's mobile network, in place since 2008, is reportedly heavily monitored and restricted; phones cannot access the Internet and can only place calls within North Korea.
In 2013 North Korea announced a tablet computer but Martyn Williams, an expert on North Korean technology, found sections of the tablet's software suggested it was manufactured at least in part in Hong Kong.
The newly announced smartphone was likewise probably not made in the country, Williams said, but was "probably made to order by a Chinese manufacturer and shipped to the May 11 Factory where they are inspected before going on sale."
During his tour of the factory Kim was seen using the device, which apparently runs a version of Google's Android mobile operating system.