Categories
M&A Mobile telecommunications

SoftBank market share in Japan – many articles get it wrong. What is SoftBank’s true market share in Japan?

by Gerhard Fasol

Many press articles get SoftBank market share in Japan wrong

With SoftBank‘s acquisition of US No. 3 mobile operators Sprint and the possibility that Softbank/Sprint will also acquire No. 4 T-Mobile-USA, SoftBank and Masayoshi Son are catching global headlines.

SoftBank market share in Japan: Many media articles report wrong data, because they forget to include group companies

These articles state SoftBank’s market share in Japan’s mobile market as 25% and say that KDDI Group has more subscribers than Softbank Group in Japan, but is this really true?

What is SoftBank‘s true market share in Japan’s mobile communications markets?

Detailed subscriber data and analysis of Japan’s telecom markets in our Report on Japan’s telecom sector.

SoftBank recently acquired eMobile/eAccess, and has been the court-appointed reconstruction partner of Willcom, after Willcom’s financial failure. Therefore eMobile/eAccess and Willcom are also part of the SoftBank group, and SoftBank plans to merge both. In addition, Wireless City Planning (WCP) are also part of the SoftBank group. You will find these transactions, the logic and reasoning behind them explained in great detail in our reports on SoftBank and on eAccess/eMobile.

List of mobile operators on Japan’s market today:

We have the following mobile operators currently in Japan – subscription market shares are shown in brackets (subscriber numbers for Docomo, KDDI and Softbank are as of February 28, 2014, while for other operators the latest officially reported numbers are used):

  • NTT Docomo Group (40.8%)
  • KDDI Group (28.9%)
    • AU
    • UQ Communications
    • fixed line and other businesses
  • SoftBank Group (30.3%)
    • SoftBank
    • eMobile/eAccess (note: eMobile, eAccess and Willcom are now combined into Ymobile)
    • Willcom (now merged into Ymobile)
    • Wireless City Planning (WCP)
    • fixed line and other businesses
  • several virtual mobile operators, e.g. Japan Communications Inc. who lease communications capacity e.g. from Docomo and retail this leased capacity to their own subscribers

The SoftBank group including eAccess/eMobile, Willcom and Wireless City Planning has actually more than 30% of Japan’s mobile subscriber market – not 25% as some articles write.

For detailed market data, statistics and analysis of Japan’s highly competitive mobile communications market, read our market report on Japan’s telecom markets, which includes analysis and data for Japan’s wireless, fixed, ADSL and FTTH markets, and detailed financial data, analysis, and comparison of the financial performance of NTT, NTT Docomo, SoftBank and KDDI.
We are also preparing reports on Japan’s cloud and data center markets –

Softbank market share: Subscriber market shares in Japan's mobile market
Subscriber market shares in Japan’s wireless communications markets for each of the competing groups: Docomo, KDDI and SoftBank.

Learn more about SoftBank, Masayoshi Son, and his 30/300 year vision for SoftBank

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Categories
telecommunications

IP backbone for Japan’s mobile operators

Japan’s telecom operators are investing to build IP (Internet Protocol) backbone networks:

IP backbone networks of Japan's mobile telecom operators
IP backbone networks of Japan’s mobile telecom operators

More: Japan Telecommunications report

Copyright·©1997-2013 ·Eurotechnology Japan KK·All Rights Reserved·

Categories
Mobile

Japan’s mobile subscriber data for March 2005

March is the month when new subscriptions peak in Japan. During March 2005 around one million new subscribers signed up for mobile services in Japan, the net gain (new subscriptions minus cancellations) was 930,500. New subscribers were shared as follows between carriers:

DoCoMo: + 480,200 (+ 51.6%)
KDDI/AU: + 436,100 (+ 46.9%)
WILLCOM: + 33,300 (+ 3.6%)
KDDI/TuKa: – 2,600 (- 0.3%)
Vodafone: -7,400 (-0.8%) (previous counting method: -58,400)
Astel: – 9,100 (- 1.0%)

TOTAL: + 930,500 (100%)

Vodafone announced a new method to calculate numbers. Without this new way of calculating, Vodafone’s loss would have been: -58,400

Net growth (loss) of subscribers per month for Japan's mobile operators - Vodafone drops into the red, losing subscribers despite a new way of counting them
Net growth (loss) of subscribers per month for Japan’s mobile operators – Vodafone drops into the red, losing subscribers despite a new way of counting them

Net growth (loss) of mobile internet subscribers (i-Mode, EZweb and Vodafone Live!): since Vodafone renamed Jsky to Vodafone Live!, its rapidly losing market share
Net growth (loss) of mobile internet subscribers (i-Mode, EZweb and Vodafone Live!): since Vodafone renamed Jsky to Vodafone Live!, its rapidly losing market share

Copyright·©1997-2013 ·Eurotechnology Japan KK·All Rights Reserved·

Categories
Mobile

Japan mobile subscriber data for Feb 2005

Japan’s mobile subscriber numbers for Feb 2005 came out yesterday…

DoCoMo is ahead again after a soft period on the strength of services and handsets, and KDDI/AU is still going strong driven by the designer series, good tariffs/discounts, music, WIN etc.

Willcom (the former DDI-Pocket) is strengthening under new management, new name and new campaigns and network upgrades, TuKa is falling back after it’s great “TuKa-S” success… and Vodafone succeeded to stabilize subscriber losses somewhat which is a mild step in the right direction and might be the first indication of Mr Tsuda’s influence…

Stimulated by the needs of our customers, who need to roll out services across the networks in Japan, we have started market surveys, interviewing mobile phone customers of all kinds on Tokyo’s streets in “focus groups”, as we do when required for our customers to get a feel for the market. I always make a point to take part personally in such consumer research, and often do some myself. In the case of mobile phone habits, the first approach at interviewing just reflects back the messages of the commercials and publicity campaigns. Only in-depth interviewing and discussion then reveals the real thoughts which are normally quite different. We learnt a lot about what average Japanese consumers think about DoCoMo, AU and Vodafone, building up a good picture. But the numbers also tell a clear story:

Subscriber net growth/loss for Japan's mobile phone and PHS operators
Subscriber net growth/loss for Japan’s mobile phone and PHS operators

Copyright·©1997-2013 ·Eurotechnology Japan KK·All Rights Reserved·