Japan’s second largest telco KDDI Corp today announced it will begin offering free calls between fixed lines and mobile phones in an attempt to reinvigorate its flagging fixed line business. It also plans to offer free calls to landline customers from 1 August, hoping the move will encourage its current mobile users to sign up to its fixed line services instead of using former monopoly operator NTT. Reuters cites KDDI President Tadashi Onodera as saying ‘We have been trying to increase landline customers … We would like our au (mobile) customers to be our landline customers.’ The telco’s research shows that 87% of households that subscribe to its mobile services are not using any of its fixed line services. Onodera has already factored in that the free call service will reduce revenue by USD18.6 million in the current fiscal year as existing users take advantage of the new offer, but says that the long term benefits outweigh the short term loss. In order to take advantage of the new free calls service customers will have to sign up for KDDI services combining mobile and fixed line charges on one bill.