Japan’s newest mobile operator eMobile, part of the eAccess Group, says it is looking to launch so-called ‘3.9G’ Long Term Evolution (LTE) services in 2010, as a precursor to the introduction of 4G LTE in 2012. According to eMobile president and chief operating officer Eric Gan, the company is also hopeful it will break even by the end of 2009. The newcomer boasts a subscriber base of more than 1.8 million users and currently commands a 26.9% of the 3G mobile data market in Japan, behind Softbank Mobile (33.3%) and NTT DoCoMo (27%).
Last month, TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate reported that eMobile launched its HSPA Evolution (HSPA+) network in the country’s largest metropolitan cities, including Tokyo, Osaka, Yokohama and Nagoya, enabling peak data rates of 21Mbps. The deployment is part of a major expansion and upgrade agreement between Ericsson and eMobile. The cellco’s new mobile broadband services, was launched on 24 July, and are powered by HSPA+ technology, supplied under an exclusive contract with Ericsson. The Swedish vendor is also the sole supplier of eMobile’s core network and systems integration services.