Japan - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Publication Overview

This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Japan’s telecommunications market. The report analyses the Telecoms Infrastructure, mobile, fixed broadband, Digital Media and Digital Economy sectors. Subjects include:

  • Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
  • Regional market comparisons
  • Telecoms Maturity Index
  • Data centres and smart Infrastructure;
  • Major players, revenues, subscribers, ARPU;
  • Broadband (FTTH, DSL);
  • Internet of Things, 5G developments
  • Mobile, broadband and mobile broadband forecasts to 2023-4.

Researcher:- Phil Harpur
Current publication date:- August 2019 (25th Edition)

Executive Summary

Japan edges closer towards a 5G launch in 2020

Japan’s telecommunications sector is one of the most developed markets in the world.

Fixed line growth in Japan has been stagnant over the past five years. This trend is predicted to continue over the next five years to 2024.

The fixed broadband market is supported largely by two technology platforms: cable TV (CATV) and FttH, with the latter more prominent.

Japan has a strong presence as a regional Asian data centre provider and is a global financial and corporate hub and one of the fastest evolving digital markets in the world. Data centre locations have easy access to high-speed international connectivity, with landing points for several submarine cables that connect with the western United States. Japan’s digital economy is highly mature and difficult to serve from overseas or alternative locations. Japan has now evolved into more of an international data centre market driven by the global hyperscale cloud providers expanding in the Tokyo and Osaka markets.

Japan possesses a large and vibrant television industry due to its unique culture and market size. Legislation enacted to restrict ownership has led to a plethora of broadcasters. Japan’s vertically integrated broadcasting industry means broadcasters create as well as distribute content.

Japan possesses one of the most advanced and largest broadband markets in the world. Japan has also been an early adopter of triple-play models which provide TV, broadband internet and voice telephony as packaged services from a single provider. Fixed-line broadband market penetration has grown slowly over the past five years in a highly mature market.

Moving towards 2020, FttH will continue to increase its share of total fixed broadband subscriptions at the expense of DSL. This is expected to accelerate as the few remaining DSL users are encouraged to migrate off the remaining DSL. Over the next five years to 2024 fixed broadband growth is expected to continue to increase slowly.

Recognising the potential of applying ICT to improve both social and economic development, Japan has taken steps to develop a digital economy. Businesses, governments and private citizens have been instrumental in creating the online content and services that make up the digital economy.

Mobile subscriber growth is expected to be relatively low over the next five years to 2024 due to a highly mature and highly competitive market. The market will be driven by the uptake of both 4G LTE and 5G services.

Japan’s mobile market is dominated by three major operators – NTT DoCoMo, KDDI and Softbank Mobile. However, the Japanese government was looking to open its mobile market up to new players for 5G services. This could result the entry of new players, even those from outside the traditional telecoms space, and potential foreign players, including those looking to target the Internet of Things, virtual reality and automotive applications.  Japan’s largest e-commerce company is working on plans to build its own nationwide 4G mobile network with an intended launch by 2020.

Mobile broadband subscriber growth is expected to be relatively low over the next five years to 2024 due to a highly mature mobile subscriber market, with the vast majority of subscribers already having wireless broadband access.

The three carriers plan on launching 5G services commercially in 2020, with DOCOMO targeting nationwide coverage by 2023. The anticipated surge in interest for IoT and related technologies such as driverless cars is expected to help fuel a boom in spending.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) is preparing to embark on R&D work in Japan to explore a new telecoms standard that will eventually succeed 5G technology.

NTT DOCOMO has launched a global Internet of Things solution designed to aid customers in the development of IoT services and has claimed a world first in a 5G test using a 28GHz band antenna on a 5G connected car.

Key Developments

  • The three carriers plan on launching 5G services commercially in 2020.
  • DOCOMO is targeting nationwide 5G coverage by 2023.
  • FttH will continue to increase its share of total fixed broadband subscriptions as DSL is phased out.
  • Over the next five years to 2024 fixed broadband growth is expected to continue to increase slowly.
  • Stagnant growth in the fixed line market is predicted to continue over the next five years to 2024.
  • Japan's first Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) trials are commencing.

Key companies mentioned in this report:

NTT; KDDI; Softbank Mobile, Internet Initiative Japan, eAccess, eMobile, Ratuken, IIJ; JCI; Line Mobile

Phil Harpur
August 2019

Table of Contents

  • Key statistics

  • Telecommunications market

    • Market overview and analysis
    • Regional Asian Market Comparison
  • Regulatory environment

    • Historic overview
    • Regulatory authority
      • The MPHPT/MIC
      • Radio Regulatory Council
      • Telecommunications Council
      • Telecommunications Carriers Association
      • Japan Internet Providers’ Association (JAIPA)
    • Government Policies
      • Government investment in infrastructure
      • Skill building, education and demand programs
      • Competition policy
      • Network non-discrimination
      • Spectrum policy
      • Broadband policy
      • Wholesale / Pricing
    • Access
    • Carrier PreSelection (CPS)
      • MYLINE calling categories
  • Fixed network operators

    • NTT Corporation
    • KDDI Corporation
    • Softbank Corporation
    • Internet Initiative Japan (IIJ)
  • Telecommunications infrastructure

    • Overview of the national telecom network
    • NTT NGN
    • Submarine cables
      • Overview
      • NTT and TransTelecom of Russia (HSCS)
      • Russia-Japan Cable Network (RJCN)
      • Trans-Pacific Express Cable Network (TPE)
      • Pacific Crossing (PC-1)
      • Google investments
      • Asia Submarine Express (ASE)
      • Asia Pacific Gateway (APG)
      • South-East Asia Japan Cable (SJC)
      • KDDI landing station
      • Japan-US Cable
    • Satellite
    • Data centres
    • Smart infrastructure
      • Internet Of Things (Iot)
      • Driverless cars
      • Smart grids
      • Smart cities
  • Broadband market

    • Market overview and analysis
    • Fixed broadband statistics and forecasts
    • Fixed broadband technologies
      • Hybrid Fibre Coax (HFC) networks
      • Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) networks
      • Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) and Fibre-To-The-Home (FttH)
      • Fixed wireless
      • Other fixed broadband services
    • Fixed broadband providers
      • NTT East and West
      • KDDI
      • G.fast
      • Other providers
  • Digital media

    • Introduction
    • Pay TV
    • Satellite TV
    • Internet Protocol TV (IPTV)
    • Video streaming
  • Mobile communications

    • Market overview and analysis
    • Mobile statistics and forecast
    • Mobile broadband statistics and forecast
    • Regulatory issues
      • Fees for mobile services
      • Licensing and Spectrum
    • Mobile infrastructure
      • 2G
      • 3G
      • 4G
      • 5G
      • VoLTE
    • Major mobile operators
      • Operators
      • Entry of new mobile providers
      • NTT DoCoMo
      • KDDI
      • Softbank Mobile
      • Ratuken Mobile
    • Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO)

List of Tables

  • Table 1 – Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities – 2019 (e)
  • Table 2 – Percentage of Population Covered by Type of Mobile Network
  • Table 3 – Key Metrics - Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) - 2019 – 2024
  • Table 4 – NTT major shareholders
  • Table 5 – NTT financial data – 2000 – 2018
  • Table 6 – NTT subscribers by service – 2015 – 2018
  • Table 7 – Historic - NTT video service subscribers – 2009 – 2017
  • Table 8 – KDDI financial data – 2001 – 2018
  • Table 9 – KDDI total capital expenditure on mobile and fixed line – 2005 – 2018
  • Table 10 – Historic - IIJ revenue and net income – 2006 - 2016
  • Table 11 – Fixed Line Subscriptions and Penetration – 2007 - 2019
  • Table 12 – Historic - Fixed line - Subscribers and penetration – 1993 – 2006
  • Table 13 – Fixed Broadband Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) – 2007 – 2024
  • Table 14 – Historic - Fixed broadband subscribers by access type – 1998 -2015
  • Table 15 – Historic - Fixed broadband subscriber annual change / market share by access type – 2001 – 2015
  • Table 16 – NTT Broadband subscribers and market share by segment – 2004 – 2018
  • Table 17 – Internet Users and Penetration – 2007 – 2019
  • Table 18 – Historic - Total international internet bandwidth – 2003 – 2017
  • Table 19 – Historic - Japan FttH subscribers by operator and market share – 2017
  • Table 20 – Historic - Japan FttH subscribers and penetration – 2002 – 2017
  • Table 21 – Historic - KDDI - ADSL and FttH subscribers – 2005 – 2017
  • Table 22 – Historic - Cable TV operators – market share – 2009 – 2016
  • Table 23 – Historic - NTT video service subscribers – 2009 – 2017
  • Table 24 – Mobile Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) – 2007 – 2024
  • Table 25 – Mobile Broadband Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) – 2009 – 2024
  • Table 26– Mobile subscribers in Japan by operator and market share – 2019
  • Table 27 – Historic - Carrier share of mobile telephone and PHS market – 2004 – 2011
  • Table 28 – NTT DoCoMo major shareholders
  • Table 29 – NTT DoCoMo revenue, net income, capex and EBITDA – 2005 - 2019
  • Table 30 – Historic - NTT DoCoMo ARPU and churn – 2004 – 2019
  • Table 31 – NTT DoCoMo ARPU (¥) – 2017 – 2019
  • Table 32 – NTT DoCoMo subscribers (thousands) – 2011 - 2019
  • Table 33 – Historic - KDDI - ARPU and churn – 2001 – 2017
  • Table 34 – KDDI ARPU and Churn Rate (¥)– 2018 – 2019
  • Table 35 – KDDI mobile subscribers – 2011 – 2019
  • Table 36– Softbank subscribers (millions) by segment– 2007 – 2019
  • Table 37 – Softbank financial data – 2009 – 2019
  • Table 38 – Historic - Softbank financial data – 1995 – 2011
  • Table 39 – Softbank mobile ARPU and churn – 2004 – 2019

List of Charts

  • Chart 1 – Mobile, Mobile Broadband & Fixed Broadband Penetration – 2019; 2024
  • Chart 2 – Asian Telecoms Maturity Index by Market Category
  • Chart 3 – Asian Telecoms Maturity Index vs GDP per Capita
  • Chart 4 – Telecoms Maturity Index – Northern Asia
  • Chart 5 – Fixed Line Subscriptions and Penetration – 2007 – 2019
  • Chart 6 – Fixed Broadband Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) – 2009 - 2024
  • Chart 7 – Mobile Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) – 2009 – 2024
  • Chart 8 – Mobile Broadband Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) – 2010 – 2024

List of Exhibits

  • Exhibit 1 – Key Market Characteristics by Market Segment
  • Exhibit 2 – Northern Asia - Key Characteristics of Telecoms Markets by Country
  • Exhibit 3 – NTT Group structure
  • Exhibit 4 – Softbank operations
  • Exhibit 5 – Major global/regional submarine cables with landing point in Japan
  • Exhibit 6 – NTT DoCoMo investment in international operators

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