Five Wireless Myths Dispelled

Back to Contents of Issue: January 2001

Kazutomo R. Hori, CEO of mobile content provider and consultancy Cybird, sets the record straight on Japan's wireless Web.

Hori1. DoCoMo has too much power. It even controls companies like Cybird.
I say no -- we work with all the wireless network operators by choice. We are their partners.

2. Japanese people want to pay for content.
Wrong; they don't. But if you create content that pleases the end user and that is of a high enough standard, they'll pay.

3. All the popular mobile content is just entertainment.
Yes and no. At first, this is true. Entertainment helps to teach the user, especially if it's simple and easy to use. Then, the user wants to do more, and will be willing to buy [more sophisticated] content.

4. Most users are office ladies and Shibuya kogyaru.
No, and we have the stats to back this up. For instance, we've found that i-mode users are more or less evenly spread across people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s. Teenagers and people in their 60s use it less.

5. Wireless is popular in Japan only because fixed Net penetration is so low.
That may be true, but wireline Net penetration in Japan is no lower than in Spain or Italy. Mobile phones are so popular because they can become one's personal secretary.

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