Vodafone Japan is back in Japan's 3G data race with today's launch of Vodafone live! BB, a fixed-line PC Web site [only in Japanese so far] that allows users to search and download content for use on mobile terminals. Vodafone live! BB will operate with Vodafone's new 3G handsets and serve as a a sort of Mother-of-all-Mobile-Portals solution for getting biggie-sized files (think audio, music and video) onto phones. Anyone can download the content files to a PC or laptop, copy them onto miniSD memory cards, and transfer them to a phone, but only Vodafone customers with a spanking new 3G celly can receive a digital key (distributed over the air) to unlock the files for playback.
ACCESS Co., Ltd., a global provider of mobile content delivery and Internet access technologies, today announced that its products will be available within the initial handsets selected by Telstra for the launch of i-mode. The profile deployment includes ACCESS' NetFront browser, messaging client, JV-Lite(TM)2 Wireless Edition (a Sun-authorized Java client), SSL client and TCP/IP protocol stack. Handsets available for Telstra's new i-mode service include NEC's N410i and Panasonic's P342i, with additional handsets to follow.
In all things mobile and wireless it has been a year of consolidation, launches, wireless everywhere and some familiar battles between well-known standards and companies. But 2004 was also 12 months where some of us became a little more sophisticated in how we use mobile devices and even the higher-ups learned — sometimes the hard way — that this remains one of tech's most exciting areas, one that can make a real difference to the bottom line.
Two new top-level domain names moved closer to approval this week, as the body charged with overseeing the Internet's technical matters moved into negotiations with the companies applying to set up and run the ".mobi" and ".jobs" domains. .Mobi is sponsored by Microsoft, Nokia, and Vodafone Group, who hope to target the domain specifically at mobile content and service providers as well as mobile device manufacturers, vendors and individual companies.
After a quick check to make double sure this isn't some twisted April Fool joke (guess not), it seems that the folks over at Sanrio have managed to license their famous Hello Kitty character to (gasp!) Nokia [.jpg image]. Apparently coming in mid-December for Cingular "Pay-as-you-Go" customers, this predictably pink handset touts exclusive games, wallpapers and ring-tones. We bet there will be a rush of Oba-san shoppers rushing around to get a hold of one here in Japan.
Hitachi Ltd., a major electrical machinery manufacturer, and Renesas Technology Corp., a microcontroller producer equally owned by Hitachi and Mitsubishi Electric Corp., have developed system-chip technology that can reduce the power consumption of cellular phones during standby time by 90%, the companies said Monday. The technology will enable mobile phone batteries to last 10 times longer with a single recharge, thereby extending their standby time to a maximum of about 30 days from the current two to three days, they said.
The combination of terrestrial digital broadcasting and mobile phone technology is what the developers want to be used for sending evacuation orders and alarm information to people during large-scale disasters. KDDI Corp. and Hitachi Ltd. are jointly developing a terminal equipped with GPS, while various levels of government are paying keen attention to that possibility. KDDI and NTT Mobile Communications Network Inc. are in the final stage of development to lead the industry, services to mobile phone are scheduled to begin during fiscal 2005.
Dilithium Networks, the leader in 3G video telephony solutions for the world's mobile and broadband industries, announced today that it has successfully demonstrated its new AnswerFastTM Plus technology, over live 3G networks in the UK and Australia. With AnswerFastTM Plus, Dilithium Networks successfully demonstrated that video calls can be set up in less than 1 second, resulting in call setup times that are comparable to those of voice calls. Present 3G terminals typically take 6-10 seconds to completely establish the audio and video channels.
ACCESS has announced that TCL Mobile Communications, China's second largest cellphone maker, has adopted ACCESS's browser NetFront for its TCL1688 handset, the first BREW mobile phone released in China. The TCL1688 is supplied to China Unicom. Used widely worldwide in digital consumer appliances, NetFront supports WML, HTML, cHTML, and WAP2.0.
Since October 2001, when DoCoMo turned on its 3G network, the company's revenue from data services has risen 27.9 percent, with customers now spending 1,970 yen, or $18.69, a month on average. Data now makes up nearly one-quarter of DoCoMo customers' monthly bills. But the extra sales did not make up for the decline in revenue from voice calls over that period. As a result, overall spending by DoCoMo customers has fallen 6.9 percent in the past three years.
>Mobikyo K.K. publishes Wireless Watch Japan, organizes MobileMonday Tokyo networking events and operates Mobile Intelligence study tours providing related custom research and advisory services. Mobikyo's founding directors are deeply connected with, respected by, and committed to, Japan's wireless and IT business community. Thousands of managers, planners, engineers and strategists depend on Mobikyo to learn about Japan's unique business models, technologies, contents, services, applications and hardware from the most innovative test-bed market for next-generation mobile industry. "Mobikyo" was chosen for the unique blending of Mobile and Tokyo. However, depending on the kanji character used for kyo, it could also mean association, capital, religion or today. With fantastic support from our clients, partners and affiliates in Japan and overseas, we have become the trusted source of independent market intelligence & business networking connections based in Tokyo.
MobileMonday Tokyo is a leading networking organization supporting Tokyo's mobile industry. We launched in September 2004, with over 70 events to-date, hosting an average 100-200 industry delegates. MobileMonday is an open platform for mobile industry visionaries, developers and industry insiders fostering cooperation and business development through live networking events to share ideas, best practices and trends from global markets. Chapters are active in over 100 cities worldwide and new locations continue to launch monthly. Founded in Helsinki, Finland, in 2000, MobileMonday is organized by a global team of 300+ volunteers and it has become the world's largest mobile community network. Details via MoMo Tokyo website
Mobile Intelligence offers related custom research and consulting designed specifically for industry executives working in sales, marketing, product development, strategy, venture capital and the media. From private workshops and conference presentations to trend spotting innovation and detailed analysis, our services are based on the direct experience and lessons learned in the Japanese mobile market. We also run a unique in-Japan guided tour service providing market introductions, personal connections and actionable lessons for clients overseas. Delegates take part in seminar and attend inside sessions, at individual companies, in technology showrooms, and -- most importantly -- on the fabled streets of Tokyo. Alumni return home with a competitive edge, integrated awareness and personal contacts moving them to the forefront of new business development. Full details via Mobile Intelligence website