Softbank, the cellphone service provider that brought Apple’s iPhone to Japan, said on Monday that it would buy a smaller rival, eAccess, for about $2.3 billion in stock, in the face of intensifying competition.
Under the terms of the deal, Softbank will pay 52,000 yen a share, more than three times the eAccess closing price of 15,070 yen on Friday.
The large premium reflects Softbank’s desire to bolster its mobile broadband capacity as it looks to attract more smartphone users. After the deal, Softbank would have more than 39 million subscribers, making it the second-biggest network operator in Japan, behind NTT DoCoMo.
Read the rest of the story: Softbank of Japan to Buy Rival eAccess for $2.3 Billion.
Though its growth has slowed significantly in recent years, DoCoMo managed to get more than 60 million Japanese to sign up for contracts as of last Sunday.Thats nearly half Japans population of 127 million.
The figure includes subscribers to DoCoMos LTE, 3G, and 2G mobile services.DoCoMos high growth period in the late 1990s saw it increasing by 10 million users in only 18 months. But recent years have proven more challenging for the phone giant.
It took more than six years to expand from 50 million subscribers to 60 million, reflecting market saturation. Total mobile subscribers in Japan number some 122 million.
Read the rest of the story: DoCoMo users hit 60 million, half Japans population.
According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, Apple has not given in to pressure from Japan’s largest cellular network, NTT DoCoMo, to include carrier-specific apps on the iPhone. Apple’s stance has caused negotiations to get the iPhone on NTT DoCoMo to stall.
NTT DoCoMo CEO Ryuji Yamada says that his company’s apps, specifically an e-wallet app and an e-mail service app, are important for his Japanese customers. While that may be true, Apple isn’t budging. Providing the user with a clean, nonbloated experience out of the box is what Apple is all about.
Most cellular phone companies have their own content distribution, e-mail clients, and special services that they charge extra for when they get new customers via preinstalled applications on most of their phones. This had been the model for years until Apple released the iPhone.
Read the rest of the story: Apple holds strong over bloatware in Japan.
Japan’s top mobile phone operator NTT DoCoMo is to unveil a smartphone with changeable "jackets" that measure bad breath, body fat and even radiation levels.
DoCoMo says it has developed technology that allows users to measure their own bodies or surroundings by slipping their smartphones inside sensor-embedded shells.
The company will showcase the technology at the Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies, a fair featuring the latest in high-end gadgetry, starting in early October near Tokyo.
Read the rest of the story: Japan carrier unveils smartphone radiation gauge.
Four leading Japanese electronics makers said Monday they will team up with top network operator NTT DoCoMo to develop the operating system for its next-generation cellphones, due for launch next year.
Sharp, Panasonic, NEC and Fujitsu will work together with NTT DoCoMo and Japanese chip maker Renesas Technology to develop a platform compatible with systems such as Linux and Symbian.
The new platform will offer improved processing speeds for high quality video as well as enhanced 3D graphics processing for more advanced mobile multimedia functions, DoCoMo said in a statement.
Read the rest of the story: Japan phone makers team up to develop new platform