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Return of the PHS?

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While Japanese mobile phones (with notable exceptions) appear less and less special compared to the great designs and innovative technologies featured in South Korean brands, Japan does have a great little secret that is definitely making a comeback: PHS.

PHS carrier Willcom has just announced that it has received the go-ahead to set up a trial in Tokyo of a super-fast version of PHS using OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplex Access) technology to improve the efficiency (and therefore, speed) of data transfer across the network and that it is going to conduct a one-year trial of the technology before rolling out services at some point in the future.

This could indeed be of great use to laptop PC users looking for reliable access on the go when WLANs are not available. Image aside (it was always seen as the poor-man’s choice), there was never all that much wrong with PHS.

The network, where it exists, is reliable for voice and PHS datacards in laptops are the connection method of choice for Tokyo hacks belting out stories in press conferences about 3G (we’re using one to post this).

After years of stories about the struggles of DoCoMo, au and Vodafone struggling with their various 3G offerings, it’s refreshing to see the old school making a comeback.
(Via Willcom [Japanese])

05:25 PM Paul Kallender • Permalink
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