NTT DOCOMO, Inc. (NYSE:DCM)
New Product and Service Presentation 2013 Spring Call
January 22, 2013 12:00 am ET
Kaoru Kato – President and Chief Executive Officer
Seiji Maruyama – Managing Director of Product Department
Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. I’m Kato of NTT DOCOMO. I thank you very much for taking your precious time to attend this New Product and Service Presentation despite the bad weather. And to those of you who are watching this session over the Internet, I thank you very much for taking your precious time for joining us.
It is now the New Year, it’s the 22 of January and it’s been seven months since I took office as President and CEO, time flies exactly. This is what I feel today, and the competitive environment is quite tough. So taking this opportunity of the introduction of new models, we will like to strive further and I look forward to your cooperation.
Today, we are introducing the New Products and Services for the spring collection. Spring is the season when we meet new friends and start new things. That’s the image that I have for this season of spring. And I believe many people will enter a new stage in their lives this spring. Seizing this opportunity when people start new lives, we’ll be introducing new smartphones that can cater to their diverse needs. We are going to introduce a perfect diversity, which perfectly meets the needs of peoples’ new lives.
We would like to become a partner that can comfortably and enjoyably satisfy customers’ daily needs. With this ambition in mind, we have developed new product and undertaken new initiatives, which will be unveiled today. Now, without further ado, let me introduce the new product.
Currently, for our winter collection, we have already released 16 different models in total, and they are enjoying good reputation. For the spring collection, including the smartphone for juniors that we unveiled the other day, we are going to introduce nine models of smartphones, two models of tablets, and in addition one mobile Wi-Fi router, so altogether we will be introducing 12 different models.
The distinctive features of the spring collection include three things; high resolution, high-speed transmission, as well as high processing speed. These models are equipped with these three main features; LTE crossy, quad-core CPU, and this time around we are going to introduce full-HD quality display in five models.
When customer choose a smartphone, they attach priority on screen quality, transmission speed, as well as processing capability. And our new ultra full high-speed smartphones realizes these capabilities at very high levels. That’s the distinctive capability of our smart spring collection.
In order to support full-HD display quality, a high processing capability is a prerequisite this time around. In addition to quad-core CPUs and large capacity memories, we have improved the specification quite significantly, introducing Android 4.1 in many models. As you can see here, compare against the previous model, very high resolution images can now be played back on our smartphones.
Take a look at this chart here, this plots dots per inch, i.e., the numerical value of the screen resolution, because we realized full-HD quality in 5-inch displays, the screen resolution has improved significantly to 440 dots per inch. This overwhelming quality cannot be expressed fully only by my verbal expression. So I hope that you’ll take a look at the actual device in the exhibition hall or at the shop fronts.
And also with the introduction of the full-HD quality display, we also enabled our customers to enjoy terrestrial digital and satellite broadcasting in full-HD quality even on smartphones without sacrificing the quality. I’ll come back to this topic later in the presentation.
Next, about the transmission speed. In the winter models, we have improved the transmission speed to 100 megabits per second downlink. And this time around, we have further improved the transmission speed to 112.5 megabits per second, the fastest LTE connection in Japan, one of our smartphones and our mobile Wi-Fi router support this speed. And of course the other eight models support 100 megabits per second maximum downlink transmission.
The area where customers can enjoy 112.5 megabits per second has been expanding and we will offer the speed in 22 cities within this fiscal year, which will be increased to over 50 cities by the end of June.
The crossy service area is also improving. The area supporting 37.5 megabits bits per second maximum downlink speed is now enhanced to 75 megabits bits per second, double the previous speed. As of the end of December, approximately 500 base station support at 75 megabits per second transmission, but we are significantly increased the number of base station supporting this speed starting from high traffic zones. By the end of the fiscal year in March, 4,000 of our base stations will support the speed which will be enhanced to 10,000 base stations by the end of June. And with this, I believe many of our customers will appreciate the improvement of transmission speed everyday.
In addition to crossy LTE, the Spring collection models are equipped with other major feature such as large capacity battery and NFC connections as well as not TV service, which now has more than 500,000 subscriptions. These smartphones are positioned as the best partner for people’s everyday life. We are going to introduce these smartphones with a great deal of confidence.
Now, let me introduce to you Spring collection lineup one after another. The first one that I would like to introduce is our number one recommendation for among the Spring collection Xperia. This time around we are going to introduce a smartphone and a tablet, which are designed based on a common concept. Look at this luxurious design. These two, if you utilize these two devices, I think you can open up a new possibility. I think these are very cool, I hope you enjoy them.
This is the smartphone i.e. Xperia Z. This is a model that was very much talked about in the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the largest electronic show in the world today. It comes in a very flat body of 7.9 millimeters in thickness. It uses a shiny glass material in the back panel, so it’s very sleek and smooth. And also the aluminum buttons on the side provides a very good accent in the overall design. I believe this is very stylish and very beautiful as a design.
And the beauty of the design is not the only distinctive feature of this phone. The full-HD display offers much higher resolution compared against its preceding models. Even it’s expanded, the resolution is quite good and picture quality is quite vivid, and also with respect to the camera. It is equipped with the 13.1 megapixel camera based on Sony state-of-the-art next-generation CMOS sensor for mobile.
So as you can see even in backlights or even in the night environment, you can take pictures quite vividly as you can see here. Especially please compare the night pictures, it’s the smoothness of the picture is quite obvious. In addition, this equipped with many other features such as NFC and large capacity battery. So we are going to introduce this model with a great amount of confidence this spring. So this is our number one recommendation among the spring collection.
And this is the Xperia-Tablet-C. Among that 10 inch size tablets in the world this is the slimmest of only 6.9 millimeters in thickness, which is in fact one millimeter slimmer compared to the Xperia Z smartphone, and the weight is only 495 gram, which is the latest in Japan today. This tablet of course supports full-HD display. I will just playback, I name it here.
This is a sample video of Grand Canyon, very beautiful as you see, very vivid and the difference with the conventional models are quite obvious. This tablet, I’ll stop the video now. This tablet has a functional linkage with Xperia Z smartphone, which is another attractiveness of this device. For example, this is a picture that is projected on the smartphone, and just by holding the smartphone over the tablet, you can immediately transfer the picture to the tablet, so I’ll do it. I’ll give you a demo right now.
As you see, the image on the smartphone was immediately transferred very easily to the tablet. Just by holding the device, the image can be transferred. Also, if you connect the two devices via cable, as you see on the screen, then you can charge the smartphone using the tablet battery. The tablet is equipped with a 6,000 milliampere-hour large capacity battery. So if you hold them together, it gives you a sense of security when you are outside your home.
So it has convenience and of course, this proposes a new usage style of holding both the smartphone and a tablet. We will accept the orders for Xperia Z from tomorrow, and this will go on sale from the 9 of February. As far as Xperia Tablet Z is concerned, this will go on sale from March.
Next, I would introduce three other models, ELUGA X, ARROWS X, and Optimus G Pro. All these three models are equipped with five-inch large screen, full-HD displays.
ELUGA X has a very large screen, but the frame is quite strong. It’s very narrow, so it’s very easy to carry. ARROWS X is equipped with a fingerprint sensor, offering a high-level security, so it gives a sense of security to the users. And Optimus G Pro is equipped with a 3,000 milliampere-hour battery, which is the largest battery capacity among the spring collections.
High resolution, high-speed access, and high processing speed, these models are equipped with these distinctive features and yet they offer uniqueness. ELUGA will start accepting orders from tomorrow, and this is expected to go on sale on the 30 of January. ARROWS and Optimus, we plan to start releasing them from February onwards. So I hope you’ll look forward to them.
And the next, let me introduce Ascend D2 and our Mobile Wi-Fi router, HW-02E. These two models are equipped with the largest downlink speed of 112.5 megabits per second, the fastest LTE connection in Japan. And these will go on sale from March and April respectively.
Next, let me AQUOS PHONE, EX and MEDIAS X. Turning from AQUOS PHONE, EX; through the bottom half of this device, you will find very luminous illumination, which features from femininity. Also, we have introduced an application called (inaudible) where you can simulate makeup; this is already pre-installed in collaboration with Shiseido. We sincerely hope that female customers will enjoy this application. We will accept orders starting from 23, which is tomorrow, and we intend to sell them starting from 25.
So this is now MEDIAS X. Even if you use this device for many hours, it’s very easy on the eye and you can comfortably use the service. We have a function call by where cutting blue rate by 30%. We intend to put them on sales starting from February.
And this is MEDIAS W. As you can see, this is a smartphone that offers dual screen type, which actually defies convention. As you can see, when you are making a phone call, it acts as a smartphone, but then if you want to browse, you can actually use this as a large screen tablet. So you will be able to use this device in two different styles, as you will be able to enjoy social networking on the left hand side, but on the right hand side, you will be able to view the [rep]. So it’s a very new built model that illustrates your type of usage of smartphones. We intend to start them on sale, put them on sale starting from April.
That’s been at least, please view this. This is the smartphone for Junior, which we announced the other day. The usage time and the download of applications can be restricted and also we offer filtering for harmful sites. We believe that we have offered functions that will give sense of security and comfort, not just to children but also to the parents. We are also offering dedicated flat rate package, so on top of functions available, in terms of pressing spot, we will be able to give you a sense of comfort. Am sure this is a smartphone that will be very convincing to many potential customers. So in this very safe and secure smartphone for Junior, we will start taking orders from 23 and they will be available for sales starting from 1st of February.
So that’s all the explanation I have for the new spring lineup for 2013. We will start to put them on sale starting from January 25 and onwards. And prior to the sale of these spring models, starting from today, these new models will be displayed and these smartphone launches in six different locations in Japan all the way from Sapporo to Kyushu. So therefore, we too hope that as many people as possible will be able to experience the beauty of these devices actually.
Also DOCOMO, we would like to support the new live study started by students and their families. And for that purpose, we have already launched campaigns such as old student discount programs and student family bundled discount starting from January 18. In the case of orient student discount, they can offer a basic retrieve chart up to 37 months at maximum and we are offering significant discount for monthly usage.
In the case of student family bundled discount programs, we are offering right discounts, not only to students but also to families who purchase handsets. I do hope that all of you will avail yourselves of these opportunities, which will allow you to purchase handsets at a very reasonable price.
Now, from now on, I would like to introduce to you our new initiative entitled docomo Smart Home.
As you can see, in line with fast speed, mobile transmission speed, smartphones and also advanced functions are now becoming available for smartphones and mobile devices. So therefore, smartphones and tablets, we want to link them with television and multi-device, multi-screen fashion, we hope that the convenience and the joy of mobiles can be expanded to the home. This is the new initiative called the Smart Home.
In addressing this new Smart Home initiative, we have considered two possible approaches. First is, being able to enjoy smartphone-based contents at home. And the second is, replaying television programs and other contents inside the home, over the smartphone. So these are the two approaches we are taking in this new initiative.
Let me start with the first approach. Using smartphone-based contents at home, DOCOMO will be proposing a new way of usage, a new way of enjoying these services. So as the first tool, we will like to introduce to you the dtab, and although it might be somewhat difficult for you to see from the screen, we want to introduce SmartTV dstick.
Let me first start with the dtab. This dtab is a tablet for you to enjoy contents such as dvideo and dshopping services at home. It’s a 10.1-inch tablet dedicated to Wi-Fi services. If you use the DOCOMO ID, then you will be able to access the dmarket services, not over your smartphones, but will allow you to enjoy the service in the multi-device fashion using this tablet. There is no additional charge on top of the monthly usage charge for the various tools. It’s also a dedicated tablet for Wi-Fi services, meaning that there is no need for additional monthly charges either.
Now, the screen for the dtab, is this. We have made sure that they are laid out in a fashion, which will enable you to enjoy the various dmarket services. For example, on the left-hand side, we can show you the recommended products from dshopping. We can also introduce to you videos and films that are newly distributed under dvideo. Towards the right-hand side, we have located icons, so that various dmarket services can be immediately utilized.
So if you have this dtab in your living room, and then in a very easy to use large screen, you will be able to use dshopping and web-based browsing; you can also continue to watch the contents that you saw in the dvideo and dbook, over your smartphone in your living room, as well. So in this fashion, all the family members will be able to enjoy the dmarket-based contents over the tablet. If you are at home, you might as well use large screen that is available at your home.
We plan to make dtab available starting from March. We will first make them available over our online shops, and from April onwards, we will make sure that they will become available in our various DOCOMO shops. At the launch, we intend to offer this at a very affordable campaign price of ¥9,975, which is cheaper than ¥10,000.
Now, you might have noticed already that, we have changed the name of the stores under dmarket, so starting from January 30, VIDEO Store, or what we have referred to as VIDEO Store will be referred to as dvideo. So to make sure that these services are associated with DOCOMO services, we are going to add [de] small letters as a prefix on all of these services.
Next, is the SmartTV dstick. You will notice that I have taken this is out from my inside pocket. Now dstick is a very small size stick type device. So if you insert this into the television set, then you will be able to view various services such as the video d anime store and d hits, in other dmarket related services on your television screen at home.
The dstick allows you to access dmarket contents and play video on your television through this Wi-Fi router. If you download the dedicated application then your smartphone can actually be used as a remote control and you will be able to select a replay contents. As for details pertaining to the connection method, you’ll be able to take a look at this at the exhibition room so I will not talk about details here.
However, the usage fee for the dstick as long as you’re subscriber to the dvideo services, we’ll not record additional charge and you can be offered free of charge. So you will be able to enjoy the film at your living room being able to enjoy animation in your own room, so in whatever way, you’ll be able to enjoy the dmarket services over the television screen.
As for dstick we will make them available at DOCOMO online shop starting from March 1. We will also be carrying out a campaign whereby the dstick will be offered free of charge to some 70,000 people. We will start to accept applications starting from February 1. We do hope that all of you will apply, and during this period a correction, the campaign will last until May 31.
So (inaudible) talked about the dtab and SmartTV stick, which can be enjoyed which will enable it into dmarket over a multi-device and multi-screen fashion in order for you to make use of these services. The assumption is that you will have Wi-Fi enabled environment at home. So for that purpose starting from March, we will be offering Wi-Fi router for home at free of charge in a rental fashion.
I’ve talked about home in the smartphone initiative, you’ll be able to enjoy smartphone-based contents at home, that’s one direction. Let me talk about the other direction being able to enjoy contents in such homes such as prerecorded television programs over your smartphones.
In the spring model, we have introduced full-HD display functions, and this will allow you to have access to full-HD quality pictures which were not available over your conventional smartphones. Then were would these full-HD videos be stored, inside your home.
Right now inside your home, you have a very large amount of high-resolution video going beyond the HD quality through your terrestrial digital television and also through satellite broadcasting. So this time around and DOCOMO in collaboration with electronic manufacturers decided to provide an environment, which will enable you to view high-quality contents of the original picture quality over your smartphones to be more concrete.
Packet video which belongs to DOCOMO group is offering application called Twonky Beam. We expanded the function of this application and we make sure that they are accommodated full-HD quality. So if you can connect to your smartphones and a blu-ray disc recorder through the Wi-Fi at Wi-Fi router at home the programs that were recorded in the recorder can be viewed in the streaming fashion using the Twonky Beam application in full-HD quality.
Also NTT Plala’s Scully TV will also be providing the same function. So therefore, we have subscriber to Scully TV services and then you’ll be able to view full-HD quality programs that are disputed more than 60 channels over your smartphone. Also even if you’re not subscriber to Scully TV right now, we have made available some free of charge contents that whereby you’ll be able to experience these contents. We do hope that all of you will make use of this opportunity.
So if you use this Twonky application, you’ll be able to view terrestrial digital programs and Scully TV contents over your smartphones, no matter where you are inside the home, be at your bedroom or be at in your study. So I have introduced to you the docomo Smart Home initiative, we will continue to offer new products and services going forward. We do hope that you will continue to expect a great deal from DOCOMO.
So I’ve already explained to you the spring lineup for the 2013 and also about our new initiative called docomo Smart Home. We believe that the spring model for 2013 is perfectly suited for the start of a new life and that this will satisfy the preference of everyone in your family from children to adults.
And also the docomo Smart Home initiative will enable you to expand the fund and the convenience of smartphone in your home. We believe that this represent products and services, which will satisfy all the members of your family. We’re very confident about this.
DOCOMO will continue to expand the new world beyond the smartphone. We sincerely hope that all of you will choose DOCOMO as the partner for you and your life. Thank you very much for your kind attention.
Next, we would like to move on to the Q&A session. Please wait for a little while until we rearrange the stage settings. Also, the presentation material that we use for this meeting can be handed out to you at the reception. If you wish to receive a copy, please drop by the reception afterwards.
Thank you very much for your patience. We will now like to commence the question-and-answer session. The questions will be responded by Mr. Kaoru Kato, President and CEO of NTT DOCOMO; and by Mr. Seiji Maruyama, Managing Director of Product Department.
Now, if you have a question, please raise your hand at your seat. I would like to nominate the questioner and the microphone will be brought to you. So before you start your question, please identify your name and affiliation before you start your question. And because of the interest of time, we would like to limit the number of questions to only one for one questioner.
Also, the Q&A session for analysts is prepared later. So I hope you will wait until that occasion for you to raise your questions. Now, are there any questions from the floor? Before the questions, I made two errors in my presentations, which is about the battery, battery capacity.
Actually Xperia Tab, Tab Z, I say 600 milliampere per hour, but it is in fact 6,000 milliampere-hour, large capacity battery. And the other mistake that I made is about the battery capacity again. Optimus G Pro, this battery capacity, I think I said 300, but instead in reality it offers 3,000 milliampere-hour as you saw on the screen. So these are the two corrections that I have to make before handling your questions. Again, the presentation material can be handed out to you at the reception, so if you need any copy please drop by the reception later. Now, are there any questions? Please raise your hand if you have any question.
Okay. I’ll like to start with this gentlemen in the far right back, second row from the front.
I am (inaudible). Regarding dtab, I have a question. This dtab, I think this is initiative to vitalize your service business, so this is similar in my view as Amazon’s Kindle business. And also by introducing Wi-Fi only dtab, how far do you think your dmarket could expand going forward? What is your vision on these points? So those are the questions relating to dtab.
Regarding the positioning of dtab, this is a Wi-Fi dedicated device and yet the initial screen, the front screen is based on dmarket arrangement. So on your palm, on your smartphone, in addition to the dmarket access to smartphones, I think for home usage we saw larger screen will be better and more convenient. So in order to enhance the convenience, we decided to launch the dtablet device, dtab device and the price is quite reasonable during the campaign season, it’s cheaper compared against Kindle Fire. So I think we are aiming at the same segment.
And with respect to dmarket, we would like to vitalize the dmarket, leveraging dtab, so we would like to enrich the content offered on dmarket and we hope that usage will expand with the introduction of distinctive new device. So as we have been repeating our statements on many occasions since last year, we would like to expand the business size of new businesses to ¥1 trillion in revenues. So to that end, dshopping and dmarket content, we will like to expand the content size to ¥100 billion or so and we would like to further achieve upsize through this introduction of new device.
Thank you [Mr. Kamio] for that question. Next question please. We will go to this block. Gentleman in the second row, please. Yes, I guess this gentleman.
Thank you (inaudible) from NHK. Thank you very much for this opportunity. I wanted to ask you about your smartphones. Well, I understand that Xperia is the key device here, but as you are well aware, various allocations about the potential introduction of iPhone and DOCOMO, so at this stage you are talking about Xperia, not iPhones, do you believe that Xperia is the competitive product to iPhone? If that’s the case, inclusive of specifications, how do you believe that Xperia can actually compete with iPhone? Can you elaborate on this point please?
Well, I think this is question about iPhone and Xperia and the relationship between the two. Well, in the case of smartphones, I think we are beginning to see very advanced functions and also in terms of operability and also in terms of our services, I think we are offering a very enriched lineup. So that been the case as far as the spring model is considered, Xperia and also Xperia Z as the smartphone and Xperia tablets Z as tablet. We are offering this and it is a very integrated service, if you will.
Now, as far as functions are concerned, I believe that there is very little difference between various models. I think that’s the stage we are at. So in that regard, I think we are more than competitive against potential competitive models. Are we going to have a head on competition with iPhone? Well, I think it’s my 4.5 years since I’ve almost made available in the Japanese market. The reason is it’s an attractive product on its own right, we are aware of that and various vendors are trying to catch up and also trying to overtake the iPhone product.
Now going forward, I am sure that this competition will continue and this will help to make smartphones more competitive and I am sure smartphones new trend will become even more diversified going forward as a result of this competition.
Thank you. Are there any other questions? If you have any questions, please raise your hand. The in front row in this block please.
My name is (inaudible). Regarding Osaifu-Keitai electronic wallet NFC capability, in the winter collection, Xperia AX supported Osaifu-Keitai and ID, but the ID series was not functioning in some cases. So that kind of trouble was reported in the winter collection. With the spring models, have you really, fully tested and eliminated such problems?
Yes, we are very sorry to have inconvenience to some of our customers with NFC capabilities. As you see, Mr. Maruyama may thorough preparations and conduct a thorough testing, so I don’t think this will happen again, but should anything happen, we would speedily react and respond to the problem.
Thank you. Next question please.
We would like to go to the person in the second row, from the front, in the center block. [Hidaka], a freelance journalist.
Now, you talked about the Smart Home initiative any of the dedicated device. And I think it’s an initiative to introduce contents, or just be contents over this particular device, not a smartphone inside your home. But at the same time, household electronic manufacturers are also offering their home initiative, home phone type of initiative, players like Google. But unless you have a dedicated player, this service cannot be utilized. However, if that – the users, they want to be able to use the devices or tablets they already have.
So players like Google and Apple, they are global players, and they have their global strategy. It’s better that the users can use this very broad range services rather than having to use dedicated tablet or devices. So, comparing against these – so part of the advantages that DOCOMO can bring against these players who are active on a global scale. Yes, a dedicated Wi-Fi tablet, we have prepared this dedicated Wi-Fi tablet.
And going back to your earlier question, the dmarket, which is a service which we’re providing. It’s an attempt to bring in these dmarket inside your home over the larger screen. And as I talked about in my presentation, in the front screen, it’s designed in that fashion, so therefore, it makes our access to our services much more easily.
Also tablets, if you have a Wi-Fi enabled tablets, although it’s not, you will be able to introduce the application, it’s not being installed, but you will be able to actually use these services over if you download these applications. So DOCOMO introducing Wi-Fi, a dedicated Wi-Fi tablet, the front screen is linked with the dmarket, and it’s an attempt to bring these services to the screen inside your home. So you’ve asked about advantage. Yes, we do have intentions to bring this initiative. The intension is that we want to be able to make this even more advanced going forward.
Thank you very much.
Next question will be taken from the middle block, the second row from the front. Sorry to have kept you waiting. Suzuki, a freelance reporter.
This is a question relating to NFC, according to my investigation, I think three models are compatible with all three models of NFC. Can we expect that there will be more models supporting all three NFC capabilities going forward?
Yes, the NFC is becoming a boom worldwide. So we believe that such kind of compatibility will increase going forward. Of course, in our case we support both type A and B. But of course, we also have to support FeliCa. So FeliCa is also supported, so this is the authentic or NFC capability if you will, and that’s supported in our device already.
In the interest of time, this will have to be the final question for this session. So who would like to ask a question, please raise your hand. There we like to go to the question from the person in the third row. Thank you (inaudible) for upcoming.
Well, this time around, I have two, especially two highly portfolio models that allow to accommodate, how to make it more, how to make megabit per second. But it’s very difficult to get assess of that in the center of the city?
So therefore, high-speed transmissions made available in the center of the metropolitan.
Could you not use different bands of the five times 10 MHz band? Can you talk about different carrier bands?
Well, we do apologize for the inconvenience caused. Yes, we are going to offer higher speed. For example, 37.52 megabits per second, 100 megabit per second, 125 megabit per second and this will start from the center of the town actually. But as far as – yes, we do have the spectrum of 1.5 gigahertz and 1.7 gigahertz, we want to accommodate that. But I think you have to start with assumption of what spectrums and what bands are accommodated by the handset of course, if it’s global, you can accommodate, however it’s taking time.
We went actually introduce these enhancements as soon as possible. Now in the metropolitan area, we now have close to 10 million subscribers for LTE based services, so we don’t want to inconvenience these currency-based customers, we will do our best, not to inconvenience them.
So what about the band 3E? Will that be effective for globally procured handsets, will that be the case?
Yes, I agree that point taken. Thank you for your question.
Thank you very much. With this, we will like to finish the Q&A session. Thank you Mr. Kato and Mr. Maruyama, please get off the stage.
Now we would like to invite the guest for our talk session. Please wait for a little while until we rearrange the settings again of the stage.
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