i-mode Slow Down Under
According to a Telstra insider, the take-up of iMode, which allows customers to surf the internet on a customised handset, has been far from overwhelming. Telstra has signed up less than 50,000 customers to date, with one insider putting subscriber numbers at closer to 30,000. Meanwhile, Vodafone Live, has gathered more than 400,000 Australian customers since April 2003. A Telstra spokesman said it was important to remember that while iMode had had a “soft” launch in November, it was yet to be offered by Telstra’s entire dealer network.
Telstra has committed $1 billion over three years to 3G, the technology which allows customers to make video calls and watch audio-visual content on their mobile handsets. In order to hold on to the exclusive license for iMode in Australia, Telstra is required by the technology’s owner, DoCoMo of Japan, to sign up one million subscribers within three years.
The partnership with DoCoMo has been problematic because Telstra has to wait for the company, Japan’s second-largest mobile carrier, to sign off on everything from content to advertising. Continue >>
Ed’s Note: If DoCoMo is “Japan’s second-largest mobile carrier” we wonder who they think is No. 1? A sloppy mistake that would make a reasonable person wonder, perhaps, what else in this ‘news story’ might be slightly amiss..?!?
Here’s a link for to DoCoMo’s description “What is i-mode”.