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Wednesday, 24 May, 2000, 11:03 GMT 12:03 UK
Mobile internet boosts NTT
DoCoMo ia the pioneer of i-mode mobile phones
DoCoMo is the pioneer of i-mode mobile phones
NTT DoCoMo, the world's second largest mobile telephone operator, has announced a surge in net profits, boosted by its internet i-mode mobile phone business.

The company, which is a subsidiary of Japanese telecommunications giant Nippon Telegraph and Telephone, said its net profit rose by 23% to 252.14bn yen on revenues of 3,720bn yen, up 19.2% on the year.

"We were able to post increased sales and profits thanks to the good market for mobile phones, especially i-mode," said DoCoMo President Keiji Tachikawa.

The company, which holds 60% of the Japanese mobile phone market, said it had nearly seven million subscribers for its i-mode service, which has rapidly become Japan's biggest platform for internet access.

The service allows users to send and receive email and gives them access to more than 7,000 internet sites via their mobile phones.

High-growth market

The company said it saw booming demand for i-mode and data transmission, but noted that voice transmission had reached its saturation point.

It also said all its mobile phones were going to be enabled with the i-mode service and that it expected the numbers of i-mode users in Japan to rise to 20 million by the end of 2001.

DoCoMo said it would incorporate Java programming into its phones later this year, which would allow subscribers to download more information.

DoCoMo predicts that the Japanese mobile phone market will grow by 13.7% to 33.4 million subscribers by 2001.

DoCoMo is also seeking to expand its position on the global telecoms markets through deals in Europe and the US.

Earlier this month, it announced it had taken a 15% stake in the mobile unit of Dutch telecoms company, KPN for 5bn euros.

Prior to that NTT Communications, DoCoMo's parent company, said it would buy US internet company Verio for $5.5bn.

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See also:

09 May 00 | Business
NTT, KPN in mobile deal
08 May 00 | Business
NTT in $5.5bn web deal
10 Feb 00 | Business
Japan gets cheap web access
17 Nov 99 | The Company File
NTT to slash workforce
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