Best Phone Company in Japan? What about Rakuten Mobile?

Best Phone Company in Japan? What about Rakuten Mobile?

Japan is made up of three cellular mobile providers, the giant NTT Docomo, KDDI’s AU service, and Softbank Mobile (the former Vodafone operation).  As the fastest growing provider of Cloud-based business phones in Japan, iPBX Hosting partner service representatives (PSR) get a chance to help people with all three platforms.

Who Is The Best Mobile Phone Company In Japan?
If you ask us, the best company is the one with the best coverage and the fastest speeds for mobile packet service (WIFI).  In Japan, the best mobile phone company may vary based on the location, the time of day, and the device you’re actually using.  We are looking for the provider who is consistently providing uninhibited access to the internet.  Generally, our PSRs seeing NTT Docomo as the best provider of pure internet that works great with iPBX Circle and other VoIP (UCaaS) services.  Both Softbank and AU tend to throttle (restrict) their internet traffic.  AU also seems to be limited by their platform being CMDA-type cellular instead of 3G (you couldn’t make a phone call and surf the net at the same time).  Generally, we recommend avoiding MVNOs or companies reselling Docomo and the other companies mobile access.  They usually have limited speeds and don’t control their own service offerings.

What About Rakuten Mobile?
Rakuten is a very successful company.  They are very disjointed and seem to be losing the war with Amazon Japan for their eCommerce business.  Mr. Mikitani’s decision to roll out a mobile service sounds like a great idea but maybe too little too late.  However, when Softbank took the huge loans to buy out Vodafone’s Japan operation (probably a historical miss by Europe’s Vodafone), they broad creativity in pricing plans, financing of handsets, and introduced the iPhone to Japan.  Softbank’s entry into the Japan mobile market ignited true competition and innovation that forced Docomo and KDDI to wake up a bit.

A Fourth Mobile Carrier- Rakuten Mobile
Having another mobile carrier in Japan will be great for the market.  But based on Rakuten’s announcement, we are not really sure if they can offer a service that you would want to run your business phones over.  In fact, you may want to avoid the service until they have operated it for a year or so to make sure you have the best speeds and coverage.  However, most people in Japan would like to see Rakuten investing in their eCommerce platform.  We would like to see them better compete with Amazon!

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