NTT DoCoMo has a record of sorts to show the world; Japan’s largest mobile operator said it had reached 5 million LTE subscribers and 1 million of theses signed up in the last 28 days! They had just announced their 4 million mark on July 22, and the remarkable feat has left DoCoMo giddy with excitement.
DoCoMo is ranked as one of the world’s top carriers in terms of LTE subscribers. While Korea’s SK Telecom aims for 7 million subscribers by the end of this year, USA’s Verizon has over 10 million users already. LTE, or long-term evolution, is high-speed wireless data services, which is soon becoming the norm in global services.
The standard connection allows downloads of up to 75 M bps (bits per second), but is being rolled out by major carriers in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Major devices like Samsung’s Galaxy S III has it included and many analysts believe Apple’s iPhone 5 will also have the technology. DoCoMo proposed LTE as a global standard in 2004, and its service under the Xi (pronounced “crossy”) brand offers 75 M bps in limited locations. Unlimited talk plan among subscribers and discounted data plans have been used as marketing tools.
DoCoMo’s LTE plan currently costs ¥6,510 (US$82) and provides up to 7GB of data and it goes into a lower connection speed post this number; it is without voice services.