The December 2004 subscriber stats for Japan's cellcos came out yesterday and the year-end numbers made two points quite clear: KDDI/au beat DoCoMo for the most net adds in 2004 and and Vodafone KK is still struggling. Looking a little deeper, we note that Big D's mass-subscriber migration to 3G is starting to kick in with almost 1 million customers coming 'up to speed' in December alone; meanwhile Vodafone's live! wireless Internet service actually saw a net decrease in users last month (by 700) while the two competitors added some 200,000 users to their i-mode and EZweb services.
NTT DoCoMo has announced the company will establish offices in Shanghai and Singapore in January 2005. The company said it aims to "enhance its information-gathering capabilities, as well as raise its profile and strengthen relationships with government officials and corporate managers, in these two important markets." The carrier also stated that, "Yoshimune Ishii will head the Shanghai office and Haruki Yamashita will head the Singapore office, both of which will have about four employees."
On January 13 at the 3G Mobile World Forum 2005, NeoMtel Corporation CEO Paul Kim will present the streamed session A : 3G content, services, applications, focusing on killer mobile graphic applications and Korean case studies. NeoMtel, the professional company in part of mobile multimedia solution, will be demonstrating the latest mobile multimedia technology, VIS 2.0 in the own booth (No# 22) where attendees can see how the latest mobile vector graphic technologies can be applied to eye-catching mobile services.
MTC, the world's premier mobile phone operator, is taking steps to boost its global 3G presence and is participating in the forthcoming 3G Mobile World Forum to be held in Japan this week. The telecommunications giant confirmed that it had signed up to become one of the platinum corporate sponsors of the prestigious event, which is being run for the fourth time from January 12 to 14 2005 in Tokyo. The Forum is expected to attract the world's leading 3G operators, with the commercial application of the technology at a crucial stage and the industry now faced with a choice of options as to how it moves forward.
Foreseeing that demand for 3G phones will get on track in Europe and North America this year, sparking competition with rivals in Japan, Samsung and LG are turning up the heat to market their new 3G models to customers in these regions. Mobile phone makers in Japan such as NEC, Panasonic, Sharp and Sanyo, which have concentrated on supplying W-CDMA phones to carriers in Japan, are also reportedly poised to focus more on global markets this year.
QUALCOMM Incorporated, pioneer and world leader of Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) digital wireless technology, today announced the open call for submissions for the BREW® 2005 Developer Awards. BREW publishers and developers are encouraged to submit their top BREW applications by completing an online entry form and providing a demo of their application. The deadline for online nominations is March 11 and submission materials must be received by March 28. Finalists will be announced on the BREW 2005 Awards Web site on May 9, then winners will be revealed at the awards ceremony hosted during the BREW 2005 Conference, June 1-3, in San Diego. For more information, visit: www.brew2005awards.com.
UIQ Technology today announced the new partnership program, UIQ Alliance, which is targeting a chosen set of companies providing applications or services, based on the UIQ user interface. The UIQ Alliance Partner Program provides an increased choice of UIQ compatible technologies and knowledge that will be introduced to UIQ customers. "Members of the UIQ Alliance will possess diverse skills and experience, and deliver a variety of compelling technologies, products and services to the growing ecosystem built around UIQ," says Johan Sandberg, CEO, UIQ Technology. "This will make it easier for mobile phone manufacturers to find good products and services supporting UIQ, which will be of high importance to the creation of a mass market for mobile phones based on UIQ"
Broadband Internet provider eAccess announced at a press conference here Thursday that it will start W-CDMA experiments in late January in the 1.7-GHz spectrum by partnering with Fujitsu. eAccess President Sachio Senmoto appeared confident that Japan's telecoms ministry will approve the company's application to offer mobile services starting in 2006. The trials include performance testing of W-CDMA base stations and a speed evaluation of next-gen HSDPA (so-called Super 3G).
Yesterday, NTT DoCoMo announced the 2G N506iS by NEC [.jpg], which the company says is the world's first mobile phone featuring a flat-panel display that also functions as a speaker. The flat-panel speaker emits sound by sending vibrations throughout the entire display panel. A user can hear the person on the other end by placing an ear anywhere on the panel. DoCoMo says that this makes audiovisual content more vivid than conventional handsets, whose speakers are located on the side of the display.
One of the best things about having a few days off over the holiday season in Tokyo is having time to wander casually through Akihabara and check out the latest gadgets. 2005 is shaping up as a showdown year for music-enabled portable devices and I couldn't help but notice how DoCoMo's new 3G handset, the SH901ic by Sharp, really does seem to have at least a slight style similarity to the iPod. As the network speed increases — and with flat-rate packet costs and improved handset technology — critical mass adoption by mainstream users buying even more data seems to be at hand. As competition increases, how will carriers, handset makers and content providers adapt their offerings over the coming year?
While it remains to be seen exactly what kind of applications and services will hit the streets, it has become increasingly clear that a race is on. Having both KDDI a
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