Feeds

Java phones to go mega this year?

Here we go looking for killer apps again...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Japan's number three mobile phone company, J-Phone, has claimed another 370,600 users for its 'picture phone' service in the last month, bringing the total up to just under 4 million, or a third of its total users. Rivals KDDI and DoCoMo are also offering high bandwidth, high ticket picture services, and the success of such systems in Japan offers western operators some entrancing clues as to how they can make money out of broadband services, and high-spec handsets.

Speaking to The Register at the recent GSM World Congress Sun representatives predicted a boom this year for Java handsets. All three of the major Japanese networks have deployed them successfully; they account for 25 per cent of DoCoMo's shipments, and J-Phone has shipped its 4 million phones with built-in camera since last July. Worldwide Sun expects Java handsets to top 100 million this year.

A return of the boom-days fuelled by picture phones, broadband and chargeable services however depends on the operators and whatever partners they sign actually having these services ready to roll. And while pictures play in Japan, how sure are we that the rest of the world will want to play? The mobile phone companies now wisely say that they've learned from texting, which took them by surprise, so they're not going to get caught out by the Next Big Thing. But is it pictures? Games? Soft porn?

Knowing you fluffed it once, and knowing there are several possible areas where the consumer's imagination may be set on fire, is not the same thing as being able to avoid fluffing it a second time.

The networks later this year will have large numbers of expensive phones which they'll want to get into the hands of consumers. If they've got great, compelling services to roll at the same time, then the phones may walk out of the doors. But otherwise, they'll find themselves spending heavily on subsidies and waiting for the service to take off, so that they can get their money back. It's a challenge, to say the least, because while Japan is frequently a phenomenon, it is not always a signpost. ®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
This flashlight app requires: Your contacts list, identity, access to your camera...
Who us, dodgy? Vast majority of mobile apps fail privacy test
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.