Japan’s second largest mobile operator by subscribers, KDDI Corp, is cutting its annual subscription charges by as much as JPY24,000 (USD255) as it looks to take the fight to rivals NTT DoCoMo and the increasingly influential third-placed player Softbank Mobile. Bloomberg cites a company statement which says that users in the 50+ age group category who are either switching from a rival service provider or signing up for the first time and paying via an instalment plan will benefit from the biggest savings. It went on to add that any customer paying for a handset on an instalment plan would save up to JPY9,000 per annum.
KDDI launched its instalment payment plan in June this year, helping it to cut costs from handset subsidies and contend with lower service revenues after it reduced call charges to compete with its two main rivals. Nonetheless, the operator lagged behind DoCoMo and Softbank in terms of net additions in the quarter ended 30 September. KDDI’s latest initiative kicks in on 1 November and runs until 31 December. It is also launching seven new handsets to the market, including a Casio model featuring its Exilim camera and one with an LCD display from Sharp.