The Philippines’ largest mobile operator by subscribers Smart Communications (including Piltel) has unveiled plans to offer i-mode services to post-paid customers from March. In a press statement, the PLDT-backed cellco said i-mode would be available initially to its Smart Gold subscribers, giving them access to additional services such as i-mail priced at PHP1 (USD0.025) per message. i-mode is the proprietary mobile e-mail and internet access service first developed and launched in Japan by NTT DoCoMo in 1999. The Filipino rollout is part of an agreement between NTT DoCoMo’s parent company NTT Group and PLDT. Last month DoCoMo paid JPY86.7 billion (USD816 million) to increase its stake in the Filipino incumbent by 6.64% to 20.03%.