IoT
Infrastructure
News
12/26/2007
01:58 PM
50%
50%

Japanese Carriers Seek Pole Position For Apple's iPhone

DoCoMo's relationship with Google may give it an edge over Softbank and KDDI, local reports suggest.

While Japan's cell phone service providers are bidding for rights to offer Apple's iPhone, NTT DoCoMo has obtained a leg up on its competitors by scoring new services from Apple's important partner, Google.

With negotiations under way between Apple and service providers DoCoMo and Softbank, the Nikkei news service reported from Tokyo Wednesday that Google will provide a cluster of its services for DoCoMo. Google, whose chairman Eric Schmidt is an Apple director, recently began providing important features for the iPhone in the United States.

Google was reported to be offering features including search, e-mail, calendar, and photo-sharing options over DoCoMo's i-Mode network.

Apple is faced with some unique challenges for its iPhone in Japan, because none of the country's mobile phone service providers utilize the GSM networks used by iPhone providers in the U.S. and Europe. DoCoMo, the largest Japanese cell phone provider, and Softbank, the third largest, utilize the WCDMA infrastructure standard, which can deliver faster and more robust services than EDGE-based GSM services. Apple's current iPhone carrier partners -- AT&T in the U.S., T-Mobile in Germany, Telefonica in the U.K., and Orange in France -- offer GSM connectivity.

According to media reports, KDDI, the second largest Japanese service provider, isn't in the running to provide the iPhone in Japan. KDDI uses the much-faster and more-robust CDMA2000 infrastructure, making it difficult to adopt to the iPhone's wireless specifications. In recent days KDDI and its partners announced that their Wireless Broadband Planning K.K. has received two 2.5-GHz licenses for deployment of WiMax technology in Japan. They plan to begin offering the service in 2009.

Apple, whose iPods and Macintosh computers have sold well in Japan, has indicated it will introduce the iPhone in the country in 2008.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
2014 Next-Gen WAN Survey
2014 Next-Gen WAN Survey
While 68% say demand for WAN bandwidth will increase, just 15% are in the process of bringing new services or more capacity online now. For 26%, cost is the problem. Enter vendors from Aryaka to Cisco to Pertino, all looking to use cloud to transform how IT delivers wide-area connectivity.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
How to Knock Down Barriers to Effective Risk Management
Risk management today is a hodgepodge of systems, siloed approaches, and poor data collection practices. That isn't how it should be.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.