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Japan gets its HSDPA on next week

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Thursday, August 31 sees the residents of Tokyo officially enter the really, really high-tech age when NTT DoCoMo launches its first HSDPA service and handset, offering cellphone downloads at up to 3.6Mbps.

The phone is the rather unappealing-looking N902iX made by NEC but it’s feature packed on top of the HSDPA goodness. There’s a new service called Music Channel that schedules overnight downloads of radio-style shows that users can subscribe to, an IC card for various e-commerce and train pass functions, a 4-megapixel camera, a miniSD card slot, a music player and a service that allows for sending customised text messages to appear on the screen of other phones being called. It weighs 133g.

The HSDPA network currently covers central Tokyo and DoCoMo intends to blanket 90% of Japan’s population by March 2008. The downstream speed is impressive, although uploads peak at 384Kbps. Outside the so-called FOMA High Speed areas both up and down pipes can still stretch to 384Kbps. The amount of data that can be transmitted has also been increased from the current 3G 500KB limit to 5MB.

(Via DoCoMo)

Yoshi’s take: I’m still skeptical of the need for high-speed data transfer on phones but the fact that DoCoMo offers flat-rate data plans and these new 5MB limits could change that.

12:19 AM JMLH • Permalink
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