by Carlo Longino

If At First You Don't Succeed...

After writing off about $13 billion in failed overseas investments over the last few years, you'd think NTT DoCoMo would swear off shelling out large sums for stakes in foreign carriers -- particularly as it wasn't until it changed strategies did i-mode begin to take off outside Japan. But a DoCoMo executive is now saying it's "inevitable" that the company will seek new revenue sources outside Japan and may make more investments. DoCoMo's investments in foreign carriers like 3 UK, AT&T Wireless and KPN were an unmitigated disaster, whereas its licensing of i-mode to operators, then letting them customize it to fit local needs and tastes, has become a success. So it's unclear what DoCoMo's learned in the last couple years that would make any new foreign investments successful. It should learn from global i-mode, and license more of its interesting technologies, like FeliCa, for a start. The contactless payment system has become the de facto standard in Japan, and while there are plenty of pretenders in the West trying to get NFC or other contactless payment systems up and running, there's no meaningful competition there. DoCoMo's got plenty of good ideas; it just needs to focus on exporting the right ones.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Use markdown for basic formatting. HTML is no longer supported.
  Save me a cookie
Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Show Now: Takedown
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.