I guess that many will agree that Korea is a developed country with advanced technology in many fields. However, not everything is as perfect as it might seem. I have been living in Korea for more than a year and a half and have encountered various technological issues and drawbacks. Many of which, can be easily eliminated. In this article, I will talk about a few of them.
Registering & Receiving Results for TOPIK
Perhaps everyone who has ever taken the exam to check their Korean language skills has faced this problem. Whether you pass the exam in Korea or overseas, you will definitely have difficulty getting results.
There are always huge queues on the site. As a result, you have to wait a long time to find out your score or to register for the exam. Sometimes, it can take even four or five hours! The site loads very slowly, and when the queue comes up, it is very likely that you will not be able to go to the next step because the webpage will lag. And then, after refreshing, you will be sent back to the start of the line. Many find themselves waiting for their turn again and again.
This happens because the site is overloaded, and too many people open one webpage at the same time. For registration, it can’t really be helped. However, for getting your results, it is better to check the score in the evening or the next day.
This problem could be easily solved if the score notification system were changed. For example, scores can be shown in a personal account without additional verification. This is how I found out my score when I took IELTS.
Constant Identity Verification
Without a Korean phone number, that is connected to a Korean ID, it will not be possible to use most forms of technology in South Korea. You cannot do things such as renting electric scooters, making an order using a QR code at coffee shops, booking train or bus tickets, and many other everyday tasks.
The process of obtaining an ID card in Korea takes quite a long time. I received mine 1.5 months after arrival. However, it often can be even longer, 2 or 3 months! So, until that moment foreigners do not have the opportunity to use a large number of services. Moreover, not everybody buys SIM cards because of high prices, then it will be also hard to use some applications. Plus, some people have issues with their names not matching their Korean ID, bank, and phone information. As a result, it could take months of painstakingly trying to make everything match before you can actually use the services, even after you get your ID. Even after all that, if your name is too long, you may not be able to use some sites because there are character limits but it still needs to match your ID.
Of course, all these measures are aimed at improving safety. Nevertheless, I believe that sometimes this is excessive and only makes life harder. Due to errors with verifying my account on the site for booking train tickets, even after receiving my ID card, I had to go to the railway station and buy directly there.
Too many Pop-ups
Internet users also have to deal with pop-ups every day when opening applications or websites. Pop-up notifications occur very often and before you can get access the desired webpage, you need to close the ad. Even though the button “do not show for a day/week” appears, it seems to me that this does not always work. I constantly press the button so that the pop-ups won’t show again. However, more often than not, they continue to appear.
Certainly, those pop-ups contain important and useful information, but because of their constant occurrence, I get irritated. It also distracts the user’s attention from the basic information that he is looking for on a particular site.
Final Thoughts on Cons of Technology in Korea
Undoubtedly, Korea is on the list of global leaders in the development of technology, but there are several problems as well. In this article, I pointed out the problems with getting TOPIK results, the constant need for identification, and pop-ups. I hope that someday the Korean Internet will change a little.
What do you think about the mentioned issues? Do you consider them as disadvantages? Or, have you encountered other problems?
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