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Japan's DoCoMo to carry Apple's iPhone starting this fall - report

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Japan's largest wireless carrier, NTT DoCoMo, appears to have settled its differences with Apple and will begin supporting the iPhone when it goes on sale this year, according to a new report.



Word of the agreement emerged on Thursday from Yahoo! Japan, which says DoCoMo customers can likely expect to see Apple's handset "this fall." Previous reports have had the iPhone 5 successor launching in Japan on September 20, 10 days after its expected unveiling.

DoCoMo landing the iPhone would likely prove beneficial to both the carrier and Apple. Apple's smartphone has sold well in Japan, but it has always been limited in that it had no access to the nation's largest carrier. DoCoMo's roughly 60 million customers constitute nearly half of Japan's population.

For DoCoMo, the addition of the iPhone patches a massive hole in its wireless device offerings. Executives at the carrier have previously played down any notion that not having the iPhone was hurting business, but last year the carrier blamed the lack of an iPhone offering for a net loss in customers over one quarter.

The main issue between the two firms was reportedly DoCoMo's desire to install the carrier's proprietary apps on the device before their sale to customers. Apple's staunch refusal to allow carrier-installed apps on the iPhone meant that the two companies were at an impasse, one that lasted years.

This year saw increased interaction between the two companies, with DoCoMo's president saying in January that they were working on a mutually beneficial agreement. More recently, the carrier's chief financial officer said that it made good business sense for DoCoMo to work with Apple on getting the iPhone onto its network.

It is unclear which, if either, firm eventually bent in negotiations over price and pre-installed apps. Neither DoCoMo nor Apple has made comment on the reports.
post #2 of 14
This and china mobile. Huge catalyst for apple stock!
post #3 of 14
So glad that Apple refuses to let carriers pre-install junkware on iPhones.

Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post

So glad that Apple refuses to let carriers pre-install junkware on iPhones.

so far.

 

Never say Never.   But my going in position is that Docomo realized that controlling the money is more important than controlling the user experience

post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOtherGeoff View Post
Never say Never.


Never. It's Apple!

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #6 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post

So glad that Apple refuses to let carriers pre-install junkware on iPhones.

Agreed. Stupid Docomo executive staff. Stupid!
post #7 of 14
If... Probably not... But if Apple gave any concession it would be on price, not preinstalls, as price wouldn't be as transparent to other customers.
post #8 of 14

Japanese kabuki:

 

First DoCoMO executive: We cannot make more money unless we sell the iPhone.
 

Second DoCoMO executive: We cannot make more money unless we install apps on the phone we sell.
 

TC (sotto voce): We are making more money every day.

post #9 of 14
More evidence that Apple is doomed.
post #10 of 14
If the question is "who conceded"? The answer is in the article.

"Executives at the carrier have previously played down any notion that not having the iPhone was hurting business, but last year the carrier blamed the lack of an iPhone offering for a net loss in customers over one quarter."
post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yojimbo007 View Post

This and china mobile. Huge catalyst for apple stock!

Agreed, Apple's world share is going to sky rocket with these 2 deals in place.

 

Also it's looking like the 5S/5C will launch the same day in Japan China and US? 

 

That will make this Apple's biggest product debut ever.

post #12 of 14
Yahoo Japan did not originate the report, they carried it from Asahi Shimbun Digital who usually have a better track record than Nikkei.

Docomo and the NTT group have lots of political factions. Rumors started flying near the end of 2012 when a senior Docomo executive known to head the anti Apple faction was sent to the Osaka office, a sure sign that he had lost a power struggle. This executive had opposed Apple in favor of working with domestic manufacturers but was then responsible for Docomo getting into bed with Samsung. That move lost Docomo a lot of respect with their customers.

After he got the push, Docomo toned down their Samsung Galaxy marketing which had not been the sales success they'd hoped for.
And the new president would state in interviews that Docomo was in discussions with Apple.

The signs were subtle but added up.
Edited by Joel Breckinridge - 9/5/13 at 4:01pm
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yojimbo007 View Post

This and china mobile. Huge catalyst for apple stock!

China Mobile is the bigger of the two, but this does certainly help.

 

I'd say in about a year and half, once Apple gets off of their rear ends and addresses the larger screen smartphone that Apple could have a nice 40% worldwide market share.

post #14 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yojimbo007 View Post

This and china mobile. Huge catalyst for apple stock!

 

Combine this with a lower entry 5C and the stock will reach new highs. Really excited for what lies ahead for Apple and AAPL.

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