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Wednesday, 13 February, 2002, 13:26 GMT
Japan mobile phone sales plummet
Sales of mobile phones in Japan plummeted 34% in December 2001 compared to shipment levels in the last month of the previous year.

It was the seventh month in a row that shipments have declined, according to figures from the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association (JEITA).

Furthermore, the slowdown in sales is gathering pace: The 34% drop in shipments in December compares with a 16% decline in September.

Japanese handset makers shipped 3.12 million units in December.

Handset makers worldwide struggled with declining sales last year, focusing increasingly on fashion rather than technological developments to persuade consumers to upgrade their phones.

But in Japan, deflation has also made consumers reluctant to spend.

JEITA compiles the figures from information from 19 Japanese electronics firms who supply mobile phones for the country's three mobile operators.


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