Yough Pioneer Tours

Made in DPRK – The Naenara Browser

At Young Pioneer Tours we have more than a casual interest in the technology and software of the DPRK. We’ve previously written about Red Star OS, the Arirang smartphone, and the Samjiyon tablet. Today on our ‘made in the DPRK’ series, we’ll be looking at the Naenara browser. Does it hold a candle to the big boys of Chrome, Firefox and Edge (LOL)? Let’s find out.

Naenara: a brief history

‘Naenara’ literally means ‘our country’ in Korean, and is the default browser of not only Red Star OS — the North Korean operating system — but of all devices manufactured in the country. It’s rumoured (and, at times, reasonably obvious) that the browser is based on Mozilla Firefox, but with one fairly important distinction.

Naenara automatically tries to connect directly to the North Korean intranet system (which we’ve discussed in great detail previously). While it’s therefore superficially similar to Firefox, don’t expect to be googling much with it. Some devices, such as the Samjiyon tablet, don’t even have a WiFi function! It does connect directly to the kwangmyeong network (North Korean intranet), but this does necessitate being in North Korea – something that is not always convenient for me.

When connecting to the internet proper, Naenara automatically bookmarks major North Korean websites (such as KCNA, the state news agency), but also automatically updates (whether you like it or not).

Speaking of North Korean websites: it may come as a surprise to you to find out that there are a lot more than you might imagine! Check out the following link if you’d like to learn more about this obscure cranny of the internet.