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Docomo to begin selling iPhone soon, reports say


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Never happen, but wouldn't it be great if Docomo offered to unlock existing iPhone handsets which are already out of contract, and sold a data plan for them at the normal "low" price? It's years beyond overdue that iPhones get unlocked by Japanese carriers, and that an all-comers data plan exists at a price same as you pay for the one you get when you buy a new handset. Behold the magic of the industry cartel and rigged game!

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Why would anyone now want to go from the best smartphone (samsung) to the iphone, I think apple dropped the ball. Years ago I would have gone iphone if docomo had them but went with galaxy, now glad i did the S4 blows apple outta the water.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Well, Docomo is currently the only provider that actually unlocks your phones (for 3000yen). They unlock every one of their current handsets, so i dont see why they wouldnt do it with the iPhone.

In fact, the only reason that Softbank doesnt unlock their phones (and specifically the iPhone) is because they dont want to lose iphone users to Docomo. Now that all 3 providers are offering the iPhone, that reason is gone... This might trigger an industry wide unlocking policy.

Anyway, for me this is a sign to get out of Docomo. Network is already slow as hell in stations and anywhere that there are more than 100 people around. With an influx of new iPhone users, it will become basically unusable.

5 ( +5 / -0 )


Maybe because of the dismal sales Samsung is showing?

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

I got out of Softbank because the only good smartphone was the Iphone and it wasn't very appealing anymore. Maybe now Softbank will adopt some of the other phone as well.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Hope they ll offer unlock

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Saulo - Fujitsu and Sharp have great models - with more bells and whistles than both Apple & Samsung combined ;-)

I personally prefer carriers to carry less models - much easier to chose and the have better support.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

Ok! Ok! So what is the big deal of “UN locking" cellphones????

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

So are these Sim Free?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It took so long because Docomo was trying to force Apple to install krapware for a "unique Docomi experience" for users. Typical Japanese company, not realizing the game has changed.

Elbuda, I had to buy an unlocked iPhone 5 for use in the U.S. because of Softbank's lame policies about carrier locks. They also lock iPads and require contracts, which is why I get my iPads from the U.S. and laugh at Softbank all the time. These devices are a worldwide standard for a reason you know.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

NTT are morons, they were offered the iphone years ago and they said" we dont think smart phones will be popular in Japan". Then they still resisted to phone even after it's sales had brought Softbank back from the dead due to the marketing agreement with Apple, and now they meekly join the bandwagon after losing hundreds of thousands of subscribers.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

but there will be no competition in monthly costs. it is cartel mind bobbling

2 ( +2 / -0 )

bye bye softbank ...

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Before you all jump on the bandwagon, take note that the iPhone does not have any settings for email filtering. Android phones are tied to gmail and all sorts of settings are possible on there.

Another important point is that the operating system's user interface on the iPhone is 6-years old without undergoing any discernible changes. The android experience is like a living organism...constantly changing..

'bogva' mentioned the Japanese Fujitsu and Sharp producing phones with more bells and whistles than the iPhone...being a Fujitsu Arrows phone user myself, I am inclined to agree. Especially when those extra bells and whistles tend to be very useful. Fujitsu Smartphones come with a fingerprint scanner with which not only one can lock the phone down but, also configure individual apps to open after recognizing your fingerprint.. Sharp phones have better cameras and now they are coming up with phones with 3000mAh batteries (that is twice as big as iPhone's)

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Obviously you have all been using android. I am a X android user and apple is by far a better phone and OS.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

@SamuraiBlue, all the articles I've been reading are that Android phones in general, with Samsung leading the pack, have been steadily eating up Apple's market share. Quite the opposite of your claim.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It's win / win if it's true. As Peter explained earlier, Apple and Docomo have never seen eye to eye on apps, branding, release schedules. This is why Softbank got the exclusive. Apple needs more customers, Docomo needs to stop losing customers so everyone is happy. What will be interesting is how Docomo will market the Iphone given it's track record with Samsung, will Docomo diminish Samsung's marketing to promote the Iphone, will Samsung double down on AU to offer flagship models first? This could be interesting.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I hope it is very soon. I was with DOCOMO for years until I switched to ScumBank for an iPhone.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If it was just the phone, it might be a toss up between iPhone and Andrex - sorry, Android.

But it isn't.

Everything just fits seamlessly together, iPhone, iPad, iMac. My iPhone and iPad are an extension of the iMac I have at home.

It's also iTunes. Many people miss the point and just use it as a music player, but it's far more.

And iPhoto, which has to be the best FREE photo editing and managing app.

And for those who think that iOS is static, just wait till next week.

With iOS 7 and MacOS 1.9, things are marching ahead.

"Start your copiers, Samsung!"

-8 ( +2 / -10 )


Great about all the inter connectivity I am sure the NSA & DEA don't listen to them while they update each other.

Ooops, said too much.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

So they finally gave in...? docomo wanted (still wants, I'm sure) to install their hopeless, proprietary "apps" on the iPhone and thought they had the power in this king of closed markets to demand what phone makers would do. Sure, the oyaji club of backslapping works within the Japanese business community but it didnt work with Apple. Very awesome. So docomo held out, convinced of their superiority... They were wrong.

Now, they come crawling when they finally realize that the ¥ is thicker than pride. Good for them. It is also well known that docomo doesn't want the iPhone to take to big a chunk of total sales. Instead of being happy making money, they wanna make money their way - the old way. Way to go docomo! I am a happy SoftBank client. Their network works well for my needs and I am glad to be on a network that first carried the iPhone in Japan. It shows the had some fresh views, unlike docomo.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

The main reason why many left DoCoMo was because of its data plan worth 5,500Yen. AU-KDDI charges 4,400Yen Softbank charges 4,000Yen.

iPhone in DoCoMo will not save it from worst churn rate. The expensive data plan, plus a sudden downgrade to first-generation 3G speed when certain data cap is reached will cause more to leave DoCoMo.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Well now I don't feel so special already using my iphone5 on docomo. Good news none the less

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"as the IPhone soars in popularity"

I thought Samsung's Galaxy was supposed to bury the iPhone?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

they meekly join the bandwagon after losing hundreds of thousands of subscribers.

A lot more, actually. Docomo have lost 3.2 million subscribers since the iPhone was introduced.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

OKay 32 hundred thousand.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Iphone on Docomo? Never gonna happen me thinks.. Softbanks improved a lot over the last 2/3 years and I have LTE more places than I have Xi service. By the way, the softbank ipads are not sim-locked.. I've used mine with e-mobile and with local sims abroad.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

if docomo releases the iphone without installing their own custom ui over the existing os, I hope android phones will now come without the docomo bloatware. I have a xperia nx, and its really sluggish with docomo's ui running over sony's ui running over the android os. I hate docomo bloatware, noone needs that damn sheep character

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I hope android phones will now come without the docomo bloatware. Luckily I have the short lived docomo Galaxy Nexus - pure android ,no docomoware, running 4.2 now.

I am a X android user and apple is by far a better phone and OS. How long ago? comparing android 2.2 2.3 is disingenuous. The latest versions of android 4.2, 4.3 are a superior OS, the majority of tech writers will now tell you this. Android has made leaps and bounds, ios is for the most part the same play it safe software is was 3 years ago. Have you picked up an HTC one? no sane person would use the words "far better" when comparing it to the iphone5.

docomo, au. softbank, they all suck as much as eachother in different ways, Japan really is stuck with horrendous mobile carriers. I wish TING would somehow wedge it's way into Japan and give us real choice.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I agree, the flexibility of Japanese carriers is woefully lacking and down right backwards. I have to switch to SoftBank just to send an SMS overseas with my overseas roaming phone. And what's with not being able to SMS on Japanese phone!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This news about iPhone soon to be offered in DoCoMo could be one of the main reason, if the not the only reason, why PANASONIC announced two days earlier that they will LEAVE THE CONSUMER SMARTPHONE BUSINESS in JAPAN.

Panasonic was already bleeding and seriously hurt when DoCoMo officially and energetically endorsed xPERIA and GALAXY only on its SUMMER CAMPAIGN.

With the addition of iPhone in DoCoMo, the last nail of the coffin will be naturally being hammered-in to Panasonic's coffin.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Dukeleto - I have no problems sending OVERSEAS SMSs' from DoCoMo to a number of countries. But to be honest, why would anybody care anymore about SMS with services like WhatsApp and LINE. SMS was never a big thing in Japan anyway, we were using mobile email in the late 90's, way ahead of everybody else.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

SMS didn't catch on in Japan because in the early days they were largely propriatory services. I recall J-Phone's was called "Skywalker" and I often couldn't send to other carriers, and they were (are) relatively expensive, so I and millions of others just gave up.

I much prefered SMS since i could use people's phone numbers instead of having to know their cellphone-only email addresses, whose suffixes differed by carrier and tended to be fairly long strings of characters. A hassle.

"we were using mobile email in the late 90's, way ahead of everybody else."

Which couldn't handle file attachments, while the handsets wouldn't accept your own personal email settings. What's the point? No wonder every other country in the world chose SMS.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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