NTT DoCoMo CEO Cites 'Compelling Reasons' to Reach Long-Elusive iPhone Deal with Apple in Japan
Kazuto Tsubouchi, CEO of Japan’s biggest wireless carrier NTT DoCoMo, said Monday in an interview with Japanese business magazine Sankeibiz [Google Translate] (via Bloomberg) that there are “compelling reasons” for Apple and the wireless carrier to reach an agreement to sell the iPhone. The carrier, which has never sold Apple’s mobile device before, saw its stock price surge after the interview while shares of chief rivals Softbank and KDDI dropped.
Chief Financial Officer Kazuto Tsubouchi said there are compelling reasons for Apple and his company to reach an agreement, according to an interview published in SankeiBiz. For Apple, it doesn’t make business sense not to allow Japan’s largest wireless carrier to sell the iPhone, while DoCoMo wants to be able to sell most popular handsets, Sankei said.
No deal has been reached and the two companies may not be able to come to terms, Sankei reported.
Last week, prominent Japanese business newspaper Nikkei claimed that both the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C would launch in Japan on September 20, which is also speculated to be the date for the first wave of launches for Apple’s new iPhone models. That report claimed, however, that only KDDI and Softbank would be in that wave, with DoCoMo remaining on the sidelines.
DoCoMo has been shedding customers to its rivals over the last few years as it has yet to launch the iPhone, with the carrier reportedly remaining firm in its demands to be able to preload its own apps and services on the device. Even with the losses, however, the carrier still holds over 40% of the Japanese mobile phone market.
Earlier this month, a report stated that talks between China Mobile and Apple have been “progressing smoothly”, and that both sides were optimistic about reaching a deal. China Mobile is by far the world’s biggest carrier and, like DoCoMo, does not presently carry the iPhone. Apple appears set to unveil its next-generation iPhones on September 10.