1 July marks WiMAX debut for UQ Communications

1 Jul 2009

Intel Capital, East Japan Railway Company, Kyocera Corp, Daiwa Securities Group and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, has launched commercial services in the country, initially available in parts of greater Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe, but with plans to extend coverage to all major cities by the end of fiscal 2010. The new service promises to deliver maximum connection speeds of 40Mbps (downlink), with prices starting at JPY4,480 (USD46.65) per month for an uncapped service.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, UQ Communications selected NEC Corp to supply it with 802.16e base stations in May 2009. Since February it has been conducting WiMAX service trials in Tokyo (all 23 wards), Yokohama and Kawasaki in the 2.5GHz band, using some 600 Samsung base stations, which are compliant to WiMAX Forum Wave-2 Phase-2 specifications. UQ has an aggressive WIMAX rollout schedule with a target of achieving more than 90% population coverage nationwide by 31 March 2013. At that date the newcomer aims to have 1,161 cities covered through 38,000 base stations, which includes 19,000 indoor base stations (femtocells). UQ’s backers initially capitalised the company to the tune of USD170 million but in March 2009 announced a second round of funding worth USD300 million which should be enough to ensure the company meets its WiMAX rollout targets for fiscal year 2009/10.

Japan, UQ Communications