Feeds

KPN plans i-mode launch at CeBIT

Gunning for 1m users

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

NTT DoCoMo Inc's i-mode mobile data service will formally launch in Europe on March 8 when the Japanese operator's key European partner, KPN Mobile, unveils its new service at the CeBIT fair in Hannover.

The mobile subsidiary of Dutch incumbent Royal KPN NV will launch in Germany under the E-Plus brand, and will follow with other locally branded i-mode services in the Netherlands next month, and in Belgium in June.

The arrival of i-mode in Europe, so far the heartland of mobile phone technology, promises to offer a fascinating clash between the world's single most successful mobile data service, and the wave of new data services that Europe's wireless operators are only now beginning to offer across their 2.5G GPRS networks. In Japan, i-mode has attracted more than 30 million subscribers in a little over three years. By the end of next year, KPN said it expects to have one million i-mode users across Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands.

With London-based Hutchison 3G UK Ltd also planning to support i-mode over its 3G network (which is expected to launch in the fourth quarter this year), DoCoMo's service could exceed one million European customers within the next 12 months, and grow even faster if DoCoMo succeeds in its plans to recruit further local partners among Europe's wireless operators. Certainly, if KPN's early GPRS-based i-mode is a success, many other wireless operators may consider a partnership with DoCoMo that will give them access to i-mode's established portfolio of applications and services.

Yesterday, KPN offered little guidance about who its i-mode content partners are or what the available applications will be. However, it said it has 100 potential content partners signed up who will charge approximately 2 euros ($1.74) per month for their services. To access these services, subscribers will first have to acquire an NEC N2li i-mode handset for 249 euros ($217).

Earlier this year, KPN said it also expected to source i-mode handsets from Toshiba Corp.

© ComputerWire.com. All rights reserved. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
EE plonks 4G in UK Prime Minister's backyard
OK, his constituency. Brace yourself for EXTRA #selfies
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.