Yet another important pre-launch milestone for FeliCa, the break-through IC chip technology we feel is going to turn Japan’s mobile phones into e-wallets from next year, has been announced by Fujitsu: The company will incorporate the hardware it its next-generation F900iC handsets a scant 8 weeks from now. These new handsets, as we have argued in a series of articles over the last six months, have a very good chance of sparking a revolution in the way keitai are used in Japan.
Outgoing NTT DoCoMo President Keiji Tachikawa has already signalled that FeliCa is going to become mandatory on all FOMA models from the latest iteration beginning this August, so the fact that details are starting to leak out about who is producing what isn’t surprising.
But what’s good about the gradual release of information — the news about Fujitsu was released at the Agilent Measurement Forum earlier — is that it shows confidence that development schedules and technologies are on schedule.
Of course, there’s still plenty of room for software foul-ups, and Fujitsu, Wireless Watchers will remember, hasn’t been the safest pair of hands recently with FOMA. And with millions of lines of code involved, lets hope they don’t let young Koji do the cut and paste after he’s had a couple of cool ones.
It’s said that the new summer line-up for DoCoMo is looking like three super bells-and-whistles PDC (2G) models: Sharp’s Mova SH506iC, Panny’s Mova P506iC, and Sony Ericsson’s Mova SO506iC.
Details are now also emerging of NEC’s 900iL WLAN-FOMA, which will be the first Linux-based model of NTT DoCoMo’s mobile phones. We’ll bring you an update as soon as we snoope out the facts.
— WWJ Editors