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2 major mobile carriers to introduce cheaper plans after gov't pressure


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4,480+tax=5000 Yen. Do they think this plan is cheap?

Don't worry, it gets much worse! Softbank will be tacking all sorts of other little charges onto this to push up the price.

The only way prices will truly go down is when the rank and file of Japan start signing up for MVNOs en masse. At the moment it is all to mendokusai for your average user.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Anything which costs more than 2500 Yen/Month for unlimited calls/data for a new smartphone is too expensive.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Don’t worry folks. They’ll increase their connection and disconnection fees and put the prices up on phones to compensate.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

These prices seem expensive. (I'm assuming they don't include the cost of the device.) In the UK, I have a "pay as you go" plan (can stop any time) for £10 pm (about ¥1,350). That gives 6GB of data, 500 minutes of calls, and unlimited texts (far more than I need).

6 ( +6 / -0 )

This is for their sub-brands of these carriers which are not used by 80 to 90 percent of users. I don't see anything different happening with Docomo. This will be old news by tomorrow and Suga will not do a thing to demand that they inact real price reductions for all. What a joke!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I pay less than 2,000 yen per month for mine.

But who am I to say that these companies and consumers cannot agree to enter contracts for 5,000 (or more, to be frank) if that is their decision? No one is forcing these consumers to enter these contracts. As put above, for some the money is less important than that fact that going through the hassles of changing is mendokusai. How much that hassle is worth, is very much an individual choice.

Fine that the government is trying to stimulate competition (which already existed as far as I'm concerned comparing with my own monthly bill), but I wish Suga hadn't started making decrees about 5,000 yen... Heck, why not as low as free market competition takes it?

-13 ( +1 / -14 )

KDDI Corp will start offering a 20-gigabyte plan for 3,980 yen per month in February or later under its UQ Mobile brand, while Softbank Corp will introduce a 20-gigabyte plan with up to 10 minutes of free voice calls for 4,480 yen a month under its Y!Mobile brand from late December.

Curious as to why neither carrier wants these changes on their main networks? 3rd party carriers are nice but their service suffers during peak times and in heavy use areas to make room for the main carriers. Also, why are they still charging for phone calls? With services such as LINE, FaceTime and more it doesn't really benefit them except for ripping off the few people that still make calls that way.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

People really don't need to put up with these rip-offs anymore. I pay 1500 yen a month. Calls are extra but I don't make many calls, preferring video apps whenever possible. What is sorely missing in Japan is easy access to cheap pay as you go SIM cards.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Stand and deliver! 4,480 yen a month Virtual highway robbery.

Dick Turpin would be impressed.

Don't tiptoes around the bush, legislate, create a communications ombudsman with the power to enforce competition law.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

so which Japanese carrier or service do you recommend which provides unlimited calls 24/7, unlimited messages and at least 1GB of data?

Nothing out there that comes close to that yet. For about 2500 yen you can get probably 6-8GB of data and normal phone call charges (30yen per min).

Rakuten Mobile looks to be trying to change the game though. They offer 2GB free data & SMS whilst abroad. Anyone here using them?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

For personal use I have a note 9, In Kochi my Rakuten sim only contract is adequate.

In Nagoya it is pants.

I have to use my business/work BlackBerry

0 ( +0 / -0 )

so which Japanese carrier or service do you recommend which provides unlimited calls 24/7, unlimited messages and at least 1GB of data?

I am not implying there is a Japanese carrier that offers such a deal. I am just merely saying that in this day and age, it should costs more than that.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

should not (mistype)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Wow, that was fast! Mission accomplished for Suga! Yeah right. These companies can go much lower. This is a joke really.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Rakuten, is good/reasonable for email, hangout, skype, and browsing (Kochi)

Rakuten is a DoCoMo/ AU reseller.

I have a 5GB plan plus a unlimited domestic call package for 1994 yen per months, plus international call allowance.

However I was offered this after I moaned incessantly. I gave the managers a hell of a polite ear bending.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Ymobile's plan mentioned in the article isn't cheaper. It's just more data.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It is still too expensive !

This will also be of the main reasons you won't see cool new 5G IoT stuff coming from Japan.

Docomo should be nationalised so Japan can unlock it's potential.

2 ( +2 / -0 )


If you live in the countryside, like we do, the reception for the non main carriers can be patchy.

What do you mean by "non main carriers"? Are you referring to the MVNO's like IIJmio, Mineo, Line Mobile, BiGlobe, etc? If so, they all run on one of the three major networks. Most give you a choice of either Docomo or au. Line Mobile let's you choose from all three.

And, UQ, Y mobile, and OCN are wholly owned by au, Softbank, and Docomo, and run on their respective networks.

So, I'm not quite sure why you found some to be patchy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There are those who need calls but less data. Finally, there are those who need data and calls, especially when laid up in hospital or something. I was using 10GB/week for that.

IIJMio has a reasonably-priced 12GB plan (~Y3200). Add their Y880 unlimited calling option, or just pay Y20/min instead.

Or, go with Line Mobile's 12GB plan, and add their Y280 SNS Data-free option for unlimited Line, Facebook, and Twitter data. That means you can use Line or FB Messenger apps to make voice and video calls without using any of your data allowance. Or, make traditional voice calls like with IIJMio, Y20/min or Y880 for unlimited. (With their data-free option, I only sub to the 3GB. And, I always have leftover data, which carry over to the following month, which I don't think most carriers do.)

With either of the above, I'll bet it's less than what you were/are paying with your major carrier. You may want to look into one of the MVNO's.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

UQ and Y Mobile are both MVNOs, companies who sell capacity on other people's networks. They just happen to belong to AU (KDDI) and Softbank.

Can you sign up for UQ in an AU store? If not, this will not affect most of KDDI's customers.

I use UQ myself and it is already something like 3000 yen a month for 9GB a month plus a phone number and free 5 min calls. The way things are going, I would have expected 20GB and a phone number to be 4000 yen anyway by February 2021 because MVNO competition is fierce. In other words, I doubt this has anything to do with government pressure, and is hardly a victory for Suga.

Most people will not need 20GB a month on a mobile (unless they are watching Youtube in stupid high quality).

3 ( +3 / -0 )

why not use VOIP? its beyond free calls. i use iijmio sim for 2000 yen per month with 3GB data monthly and you can override it to next month if you have left data. what i find good about iijmio is you swift on/off your data. i even can still make a clear voice call over VOIP(line, facebook, skype etc) even i turned of my data.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Obviously PM Suga is trying to appeal to young people.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Who do they want to trick with that fake? Those companies need the same or higher profit for their stakeholders and employees. If the data plans get cheaper something else will become more expensive, for instance the phones or services.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Somebody hates the fact that people object to rip-offs in Japan and is down-voting everyone multiple times.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Larr Flint

To be honest I don't care because I don't use anything which is more expensive than 1500yen per month, but still think it's a robbery to charge 4000 yen plus for a monthly plan.

well here in the US, where I live, I have a plan that’s $35 a month, and while I get unlimited talk and text, I only get 10 gigs a month. And I was mostly because of the pandemic where I used to have five gigs a month.

I mean I don’t know what they have in terms of talking text in Japan, but what I have is one of the cheapest plans you can get here in the US. So just to put things in perspective anyways.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

See? For all those that were saying that under Suga, it would be the same old same old basically, well now there’s proof that won’t necessarily be the case. I’m not saying he’s gonna bring massive landslide changes or anything, I was just saying that it won’t be entirely the same. And again, now there’s proof.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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