Korea's "digital culture" created by widespread high-speed internet connectivity has been cited as its strongest attribute, according to a survey on 344 Koreans and 280 foreigners by the Corea Image Communication Institute.
Six out of 10 foreigners and five out of 10 Koreans said the country's pervasive Internet use is its most competitive attribute.
Second were K-Pop and TV soaps cited by 13.7 percent of the Korean and 10 percent of the foreign respondents.
Asked what comes to mind first when they think about Korea, four out of 10 foreigners and three out of 10 Koreans said large conglomerates like Samsung, Hyundai and LG. Korean food such as kimchi and bibimbap came in second.
Until 2010, foreigners cited the division of Korea as the image that came to mind first when they think about the country, but that was pushed down to second place in 2012 and third place in the latest survey.