According to the latest report from omdia, a market research company, omdia noticed that there were some interesting information releases in June, which implied the same thing – Japan and Japanese telecom operators are taking action to enter the global 5g equipment market. However, Ramona Zhao, Market Research Manager for Asia Pacific service providers at omdia, said that despite the ambitious goals set by the Japanese government, “made in Japan” still has doubts about its success in the global supplier market.
Japan aims at global telecom infrastructure market
Japan is one of the leading telecom markets in Asia in the 3G and 4G era. However, omdia notes that Japan missed the opportunity to launch commercial services in 2019 in terms of Asian 5g network launch, and is still lagging behind South Korea and China.
Now, the Japanese government is determined to catch up in the telecommunications market and equipment market and occupy a dominant position. After all, the early development of 5g deployment in South Korea and China depended on the strong support of their domestic suppliers Samsung and Huawei.
In June 2020, the Japanese government announced more details of its “beyond 5g” strategy, which was launched in May this year. In its “beyond 5g” strategy document, the Japanese government calls for accelerating the deployment of 5g in Japan. Its goal is to build 210000 5g service base stations nationwide by the end of fiscal 2023, which is three times of its original plan.
The strategy paper also recommends that 6G network be put into operation in Japan around 2030. At the same time, Japan plans to capture about 30% of the global 6G infrastructure market (including software) to ensure its competitiveness in the global 6G services sector.
NTT and Rakuten announce network equipment plan
Although the Japanese government has just set the goal of 6G global infrastructure market share, which is expected to be achieved in about a decade, omdia notes that Japanese telecom operators have announced plans to strengthen their activities in the telecom equipment market.
NTT cooperates with NEC through acquisition
In June 2020, NTT and NEC announced that NTT will invest in NEC to jointly develop 5g wireless network technology. NTT will acquire nearly 5% of NEC, worth about 64.4 billion yen (US $600 million), becoming the third largest shareholder of NEC.
NTT and NEC plan to work together to expand their share in the global wireless communication network market and promote cooperation in the development of 5g and future communication technologies.
Rakuten is seeking to sell RCP to the global market
Rakuten mobile, a new entrant to the Japanese telecom market, only started providing mobile services in April this year. The company announced that it is developing Rakuten communications platform (RCP) products, which will be available to telecom companies, government agencies and other enterprise customers around the world.
Rakuten said that RCP includes all elements of Rakuten mobile network, including telecom applications and software from multiple suppliers, OSS and BSS systems for processing customer bills and activating systems, as well as edge computing and virtual network management functions.
In particular, in June 2020, Rakuten and NEC reached an agreement to jointly develop a containerized SA 5g core network. The containerized 5g core network will play a key role in the global expansion of RCP, because 5g core network will be provided as an application on RCP marketplace, so that customers can quickly and easily “click, purchase and deploy” a fully virtualized SA 5g core network solution.
In addition, Rakuten is setting up overseas offices to support the plan to extend RCP to the international market. In June 2020, Rakuten announced the opening of its international headquarters in Singapore as the R & D center of RCP and the hub of global sales and marketing.
To support the global sales and marketing of Rakuten mobile RCP products, Rakuten also plans to set up a U.S. entity in California as a hub for its international business expansion in the Americas.
With the aggravation of supply chain concerns, Japanese suppliers are facing new opportunities, but the results remain to be seen
Omdia noted some uncertainties in the global 5g device market. In mid July, the UK imposed a ban on Huawei, banning its operators from purchasing new 5g equipment from China after December 31, 2020, and gradually removing all Huawei equipment from its 5g network by the end of 2027. It is reported that after Huawei was banned, the British government is seeking to introduce Japanese suppliers to participate in the deployment of its 5g network.
However, in view of the strong competition from Ericsson and Nokia, two traditional global suppliers, it is uncertain whether Japanese manufacturers (especially Japanese telecom operators) can realize their ambitions.
Rakuten Mobile has announced that due to the outbreak of the new crown disease, the 5g service originally scheduled to be launched in June 2020 is expected to be delayed for three months. Omdia predicts that Rakuten’s cloud native 5g network deployment, if successful, will be the most powerful demonstration of RCP cases to its potential global customers.
Editor in charge: GT