Japan’s DoCoMo Still Holding Out on iPhone

Sophie Knight and Maki Shiraki, reporting for Reuters from Tokyo:

NTT DoCoMo Inc, Japan’s largest mobile provider and a pioneer of the mobile Internet, is one of just a few holdouts among the world’s big mobile carriers not offering Apple Inc’s iPhone to its 60 million customers.

It is paying heavily for that obstinacy - with a net 3.2 million users jumping ship to its two domestic rivals over the last 4-1/2 years — but is determined to protect the walled garden of services it has built around its own smartphones.

“We’re trying to develop a lifestyle system,” NTT DoCoMo CEO Kaoru Kato told Reuters in an interview this week.

I don’t see how that strategy makes sense today, especially given Android’s relative unpopularity in Japan.

Sunday, 7 July 2013