DoCoMo to fund chipset development

13 Jul 2004

Japan’s leading cellco NTT DoCoMo has teamed up with semiconductor manufacturer Renesas to develop a single chipset capable of being used on third-generation (3G) WCDMA networks and 2.5G networks based on the GSM/GPRS standard. According to the Financial Times, DoCoMo will fund Renesas to the tune of JPY7 billion (USD65 million) over three years. The operator is keen to reduce its exorbitant handset manufacturing costs, thereby enabling it to reduce the price it charges consumers for 3G terminals. In 2003 DoCoMo provided financial support to a number of its 3G handset suppliers in return for a share of the intellectual property rights associated with the products. DoCoMo is Japan’s leading 3G operator, with 4.58 million subscribers to its WCDMA network at the end of June 2004, a rise of 573,000 over the month.