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eMobile WCDMA/HSDPA 3G Network, Japan




Key Data


eMobile Ltd is a new mobile operator that is about to enter the competitive and innovative Japanese mobile communications market. eMobile obtained one of the three 3G licenses that the Japanese government granted in November 2005 to increase competition in the market.

The company is the mobile subsidiary of eAccess, Japan’s leading broadband operator. eMobile’s principal shareholders are eAccess Ltd, The Goldman Sachs Group Inc and Tokyo Broadcasting System Inc.

"The company has a vision to open up the market with flat-rate fees and high-speed data transmission."

When the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications of Japan issued the new mobile license in 2005, eMobile became the sole mobile operator awarded the UMTS license (1.7GHz spectrum). eMobile will now be the first business to enter the Japanese mobile telecommunications market in 13 years.

The service will be based on WCDMA (wideband code division multiple access) HSDPA (high-speed downlink packet access) technology. The data communication services in Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and Kyoto were launched in March 2007.

The company has a vision to open up the market with flat-rate fees and high-speed data transmission. Its voice communication services are set to begin in March 2008. The President of eMobile said at the launch: "I want to use high-speed data transmission as a weapon to give the existing businesses in the industry a scare".

The company has received about 17,000 advance applications for its services up to the end of March 2007.

DATA COMMUNICATION SERVICE

The company’s data communication service is fixed at a flat rate of ¥5,980 per month. There are two models to choose from currently, one is the keyboard-equipped EM ONE terminal, which allows the user to view one-segment terrestrial digital television broadcasting, and there is also a card-type model that plugs into laptop computers.

CONTRACTORS FOR NETWORK INSTALLATION

Huawei will build a major part of the eMobile network in northern Japan covering cities including Sendai and Sapporo. Earlier this year eMobile also contracted Ericsson to build the network in a large area of Japan from Tokyo in the east, past Nagoya in the centre to Osaka in the west.

In March 2006 eMobile selected Ericsson as one of the prime suppliers for its new WCDMA/HSDPA network. The Ericsson-supplied network will enable eMobile to aggressively enter the market with premium quality and high-speed mobile broadband services.

The agreement includes WCDMA 1.7GHz radio networks in the most populated areas of Japan, such as Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka, and a complete nationwide core network, including Ericsson’s service-aware packet core and mobile softswitch solution. Fast roll-out will enable eMobile, a subsidiary company of eAccess, to launch commercial services in March 2007.

"By applying a large number of distributed Node Bs, eMobile has now reduced the network construction cost and substantially shortened the deployment period of the 3G network."

In December 2006, eMobile and Huawei signed a purchasing contract for an HSPA network with over 1,000 HSPA Node Bs, covering major cities such as Hiroshima, Sendai, Sapporo and Nigata. The Huawei section of the network will be the first IP-based HSPA network deployed in Japan.

HSPA services are very demanding for the transmission bandwidth of the base station. eMobile expects to make full use of its existing broadband network resources in the 3G network construction.

As estimated by the technical department of eMobile, if all IP transmission is used to bear HSDPA services, up to 80% of transmission cost will be saved over E1 transmission (IP costs $350 per month to run whereas E1 costs $4,400 per month to run).

The savings of considerable network construction and maintenance costs paves the way for a widespread adoption of HSDPA services. Huawei is the first supplier that offers the Iub IP transmission solution in the industry, which supports a range of IP transmission networking modes, including TDM, MSTP, xDSL and data network based modes, to suit different application scenarios.

HUAWEI NODE B

The Huawei HSPA distributed Node B is compact and the base band unit (BBU) can be integrated with other equipment in the cabinet, making it easier to select a suitable site. The distributed Node B is light and is more portable for installation.

The HSPA distributed Node B offers similar coverage to traditional macro units but with higher service bearer capability, and supports full performance HSDPA. By applying a large number of distributed Node Bs, eMobile has now reduced the network construction cost and substantially shortened the deployment period of the 3G network.

BROADBAND WIRELESS

In February 2007 Option, the wireless technology company, announced that it is supplying eMobile Japan with broadband wireless products. Option is currently shipping eMobile branded and customised products to the Japanese mobile operator in anticipation of the commercial launch of data devices on its 1.7GHz HSDPA network in March 2007.

Option is a leading innovator in the design, development and manufacture of 3G WCDMA (HSPA and UMTS), EDGE, GPRS, GSM and WLAN technology products for wireless connectivity solutions.