Friday, April 15, 2011

The world's fastest growing mobile market

From the San Francisco Chronicle, news of an incredible wireless communications venture: They provide full 3G coverage across the country for just a few bucks a month... with 18,750% growth over the past three years...

Hey, sign me up for service... and call my broker and get me some of them stock!

Oh, wait. It's North Korea.

I guess the leftists at the SFC are getting a jump on welcoming our new Juche-exporting overlords.

Anyway, I'm thinking Orascom's North Korean adventure is a good thing. 300K subscriptions means there is one cell phone for every eighty people, and that number is growing. Simply put, the more subscribers there are, the harder it is for the authorities to monitor communications.

And while most or nearly all the current subscribers are regime loyalists, if events go sour in such a way that it turns people against the dynasty or the party or whatever (as they have done for much of the peasantry), then — boom! — you've got an instant means of communication for the opposition. Indeed, the Egypt-based Orascom may very well be paving the way for North Korea's own version of a popular uprising somewhere down the Jasmine Revolutionary road.

UPDATE:
Cell phones come with texting, so this is as good a place as any to link to my handy-dandy list of North Korean emoticons.

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