KDDI and Japanese Internet portal site operator Excite are set to transform into the dynamic duo of PC and mobile synergy. Their brand new “Duogate” co-venture will give KDDI’s au mobile handset owners full access to mega-sized celly contents — from music to games to videos — right on the PC (and vice versa).
Services will kick off this spring, though no exact date was available at press time. Broadband movies, games, and music are a focus for both firms and Excite’s target market of 20- to 34-year-olds, both male and female, makes a good match for KDDI’s core mobile content users.
KDDI brings 17 million EZweb subscribers to the JV table, making them large and in charge at Duogate, claiming 61.5 percent of the venture. Excite controls 33.5 percent and KDDI affiliate company Mediba controls the remaining five.
Duogate is capitalized at 490 million yen.
Excite debuted on the JASDAQ at the beginning of November and is looking to decrease its dependency on online ads for revenue by increasing profits from enhanced content distribution and online entertainment. It is a subsidiary of Itochu Corp., which owns over 80 percent of the firm. Excite also runs broadband service provider BBExcite, which, interestingly enough, includes the “BBphone” IP telephony service where a domestic call of three minutes costs mere edamame at just 7.5 yen.
It’s not just KDDI and Excite where flat-rate broadband and fixed-rate phone service are looking to kick each other a few rungs up the customer service ladder. Softbank is aggressively moving into the mobile telecom market here and running right alongside is their sidekick Net portal, Yahoo! Japan.
Industry insiders expect to see synchronicity similar to the Duogate JV very shortly between the Softbank/Yahoo Web and mobile menus.
Japanese press releases: