Japanese telecoms group eAccess, which offers wireless services through its recently reintegrated eMobile unit, has launched ultra-high speed Long Term Evolution (LTE) mobile data services offering unlimited 75Mbps/25Mbps (maximum) download/uploads for JPY3,880 (USD47) per month. The contract price, which applies to a two-year contract, includes a Wi-Fi router capable of connecting up to ten devices. The initial launch is believed to cover the Kanto area and the operator says its 4G/LTE network will be available in most major cities, including Tokyo and Osaka, by June 2012; services will fall back onto eMobile’s slower 42Mbps network when out of range of an LTE cell site. eAccess is the second Japanese firm to offer LTE commercially. The nation’s leading mobile carrier by subscribers NTT DoCoMo launched its own 4G network, branded Xi (pronounced ‘Crossy’), in December 2010 and had signed up 1.139 million subscribers by the start of this year.
Meanwhile, another leading rival, Softbank Mobile, has launched its own high speed mobile network, offering maximum download speeds of 76Mbps. Last month the cellco confirmed it had successfully deployed a network based on AXGP technology, an upgrade from the Personal Handyphone System (PHS) which has proven popular in Japan. Softbank Mobile says AXGP is compatible with another 4G technology, TD-LTE, which is expected to be deployed across a number of Asian countries, such as China and India.