INNOTECH announced that it has licensed its cutting-edge, solid-state device VMIS image sensor technology to Sharp Corporation. Sharp is developing an advanced image sensor that uses VMIS to achieve low power consumption and high image quality to meet the growing requirements of cameras for cell phones, PDA's and other mobile devices in near future. Highly acclaimed, VMIS technology enabled image quality as close as CCD levels with CMOS-like VMIS process featured in low power consumption.
Sony Corporation and NTT DoCoMo, Inc. have agreed to form a Joint Venture Company to develop new services based on mobile phones equipped with Sony's contactless IC Card technology FeliCa(R). The Joint Venture is targeted for establishment in January 2004. Discussions between Sony and DoCoMo will continue to finalize the details of this company which will be named: FeliCa Networks, Inc.
Japanese telecoms operators are likely to post strong half-year earnings, powered by the steady growth of 3G services and brisk demand for photo and video messaging and ring tone downloading. The new services have helped wireless carriers, including NTT DoCoMo Inc. and KDDI Corp. reel in fresh subscribers and maintain healthy per-user revenues, the industry's main measure of profitability.
Move over radio waves. Forget about infrared. And pull Bluetooth. There's a new "wireless-like" communication system in development, with some of the most interesting recent work being done in Japan. Why have another standard you ask? Make no mistake about it. PDAs and mobile computers are here to stay. In fact, they are likely to evolve into an entirely new generation of so-called wearable computers.
About 500 million Chinese people, or one out of every three Chinese, will own a mobile phone by the end of 2007, a latest industry research report said. As China's mobile phone penetration grows to one-third from the current 18 percent, the value of the telecommunication-related market will reach 520 billion yuan (US$62.65 billion) in 2007, said CCID Consulting Co Ltd, a Hong Kong-listed information industry-consulting firm, in its report.
Sony Corp and NTT DoCoMo Inc jointly announced on Oct 27 that they have agreed to form a joint venture company to develop new services based on mobile phones equipped with Sony's contactless IC Card technology called FeliCa. The joint venture, to be called FeliCa Networks Inc, is targeted for establishment in January 2004.
Pick your disguise: I want to be Dr. Jekyll as my mini-me. WWJ was pleasantly surprised last week to find that one of Japan's usually less-covered semiconductor companies, Oki Electric Industrial, has just come up with 3D digital avatar-producing software called FaceCommunicator-BBE that should allow mobile phone users to appear as a character that mimics (in real time) the user's facial expressions (anger, doubt, happiness, etc.) during calls. Given Japan's love of anime (think Pokemon), the software could be a real boon for those obsessed with being really cute - or those, for whatever reason, who don't want to show their faces during videophone conversations.
They've gone and done it now! KDDI's just announced a double whammy; on November 28, the company will offer 3G's first flat-rate packet services with all you can surf for 4,200 yen (about $37) on the souped-up, 2.4-Mbps (max) EV-DO version of CDMA 1X that KDDI has branded "WIN" (We Innovate the Next) - presumably to beat up on DoCoMo's W-CDMA-based FOMA. Then, today, it said it was halving the cost of calls from KDDI Au mobile subscribers to KDDI ADSL/ IP home phones on the Dion Service. The knives are out! With three new service innovations, two new terminals, and a data card, the company appears to be following what Kenshi Tazaki, vice president and team manager of Gartner Research Japan, calls a "high risk strategy" (think of all those potential lost packet charges!). Will Big D respond in kind just as it was hoping to glean megabucks from FOMA users? "It's a very aggressive shot at DoCoMo and stakes out a clear position by KDDI in the mobile market," says Tazaki.
Six months on from NTT DoCoMo's largely successful counterattack - via the new 2G 505i handsets - on Vodafone's Sha mail photo messaging service, the market-leading carrier has launched its next set of fab-five 505iS (S= second-generation) phones with working models, mockups, and three models (call girls?) - but, unfortunately, without the lovely Ai Kato (see 505i launch Viewpoint here). On top of entering the 2-megapixel camera war, the 505iS-series offer both JAN- and QR-standard bar-code reader capability (Cool! Get all your details in a flash!); a DoCoMo representative we interviewed gave strong hints that the 505iS may be DoCoMo's final, or next-to-final, second-generation PDC upgrade. With the company seeking to emulate KDDI's hugely successful push from 2G to 3G, migrating customers onto FOMA/W-CDMA in the latter half of next year is more vital than ever. As DoCoMo's recent FOMA predictions arch
NTT DoCoMo, Inc. and its eight regional subsidiaries today announced the upcoming launch of the new mova 505iS series of five PDC (2G) i-mode mobile phones featuring mega-pixel cameras. Menu icons downloaded from i-mode sites can be saved as preferred icons, one of various ways that the handsets can be highly personalized. The D505iS will be released on October 23, followed consecutive release of the other four models in the near future.
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