NTT Docomo

(Redirected from NTT DoCoMo)

NTT Docomo, Inc. (株式会社NTTドコモ, Kabushiki gaisha Entītī Dokomo, formerly and still colloquially stylized as NTT DoCoMo until 2008)[4][A] is a Japanese mobile phone operator. The name is officially an abbreviation of the phrase, "do communications over the mobile network", and is also from a compound word dokomo, meaning "everywhere" in Japanese.[6] Docomo provides phone, video phone (FOMA and Some PHS), i-mode (internet), and mail (i-mode mail, Short Mail, and SMS) services. The company's headquarters are in the Sanno Park Tower, Nagatachō, Chiyoda, Tokyo.[7] NTT Docomo is the largest wireless carrier in Japan, with 82.632 million subscribers as of March 2021.[8]

NTT Docomo, Inc.
Native name
Kabushiki gaisha Entiti Dokomo
TypeSubsidiary KK
FoundedAugust 14, 1991; 31 years ago (1991-08-14)
HeadquartersSanno Park Tower
Nagatachō, Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan
Key people
Kazuhiro Yoshizawa (CEO)[1]
ProductsPDC, i-mode, W-CDMA, FOMA, HSDPA, LTE, 5G NR, PHS
RevenueDecrease ¥4.65 trillion (2019)[2]
Decrease ¥854.7 billion (2019)[2]
Decrease ¥594.8 billion (2019)[2]
Total assetsIncrease ¥7.54 trillion (2019)[2]
Total equityDecrease ¥5.25 trillion (2019)[2]
Number of employees
22,955 (2011)[3]
ParentNippon Telegraph and Telephone
Former logo used from 1991 to 2008

Docomo had been spun off from Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT) in August 1991 to take over the mobile cellular operations, although the parent company had the majority stake until the re-privatization in 2020. It provides 2G (mova) PDC cellular services, 3G (FOMA) W-CDMA, 4G LTE and 5G NR services. Its businesses also included PHS (Paldio), paging, and satellite. Docomo ceased offering a PHS service on January 7, 2008. In late 2020, Docomo was bought back by NTT for about $40 billion.[9]


NTT Docomo is a subsidiary of Japan's incumbent telephone operator, NTT. The majority of NTT Docomo's shares are owned by NTT (which is 33.71% government-owned). While some NTT shares are publicly traded, control of the company by Japanese interests (government and civilian) is guaranteed by the number of shares available to buyers. It provides wireless voice and data communications to subscribers in Japan. NTT Docomo is the creator of W-CDMA technology as well as mobile i-mode service.

NTT Docomo had over 53 million customers (as of March 2008), which is more than half of Japan's cellular market. The company provides a wide variety of mobile multimedia services. These include i-mode which provides e-mail and internet access to over 50 million subscribers, FOMA, which was launched in 2001 as the world's first 3G mobile service based on W-CDMA, Xi, a 4G LTE mobile service which was launched on December 24, 2010, Premium 4G, a LTE Advanced service which was launched on March 27, 2015, and DoCoMo 5G, a 5G NR service which launched on March 25, 2020.

In addition to wholly owned subsidiaries in Europe and North America, the company is expanding its global reach through strategic alliances with mobile and multimedia service providers in Asia-Pacific and Europe. NTT Docomo is listed on the Tokyo (9437), London (NDCM), and New York (DCM) stock exchanges.

On April 19, 2008, it was announced that Ryuji Yamada, the current co-president of NTT Docomo, will be promoted as the president of NTT Docomo in June 2008. Masao Nakamura will stay in NTT Docomo as a director and also the senior adviser. Since October 2006, when the introduction to the service which allows the user to carry their original phone number with a new provider was made, NTT Docomo has lost many users to KDDI and SoftBank. This promotion was made in order to get more users for NTT Docomo.[10] The company was the last major global mobile carrier to offer Apple's iPhone, which it finally did with the release of the iPhone 5s and 5c. This has been cited as one of the reasons for the steady stream of its customers switching for competing networks.[11]

In June 2011, the company announced that they were teaming up with McAfee to provide McAfee VirusScan Mobile for its Android mobile users.[12] In July 2012, NTT Docomo acquired Italy's Buongiorno in a deal worth 209 million euros.[13]

Research and developmentEdit

In October 2007, the prototype Wellness mobile phone of Japan's NTT Docomo Inc. and Mitsubishi Electric Corp. was launched at CEATEC. It checks health with a motion sensor that detects body movement and measures calories, and includes a breathalyzer.[14]

On January 24, 2008, NTT Docomo announced a partnership with Google, which allowed all models after the FOMA904i models to view YouTube videos.[15][16]

In May 2017, NTT Docomo launched 5G trial networks at Aomi, Odaiba (Tokyo Waterfront City) and the area around Tokyo Skytree.[17] NTT Docomo commercially launched its 5G network on March 25, 2020, the first Japanese operator to do so,[18] and making Japan among the first countries in the world to launch 5G.

NTT Docomo was a founding member of the Symbian Foundation.[19]

In August 2021, NTT DOCOMO and Airbus demonstrated a solar-powered Zephyr High Altitude Platform Station (HAPS) for wireless connectivity to evaluate the application of HAPS for use in 5G evolution and 6G usage. The trial took place in the United States over 18 days conducting flights in the stratosphere and transmitting data at various speeds up to a distance of 140km. If the communications system is considered feasible, then NTT DOCOMO and Airbus would be able to provide communication services to remote islands, mountainous areas, and to remote sea lanes.[20]

Earthquake warning systemEdit

From 2008, Docomo began offering a service called the "Area Mail Disaster Information Service" which broadcasts Earthquake Early Warning messages produced by the Japan Meteorological Agency to its subscribers with compatible handsets.[21] This service is provided free of charge and messages are limited to those areas affected by each particular alert. These alerts have a unique ring tone so they can be easily distinguished from incoming calls or messages.

Civil protection systemEdit

From 2014, under Civil Protection Law of Japan, Docomo began offering a service called the "Area Mail Disaster and Evacuation Information Service" which broadcasts J-Alert messages (including Earthquake Early Warning) produced by the Japan Fire and Disaster Management Agency to its subscribers with compatible handsets (e.g. Sony XPERIA, iPhone 5s, Samsung Galaxy).[22]

The message is broadcast when threats are imminent (e.g. North Korea's ballistic missile launching, terrorist attack to nuclear power plant, volcanic eruptions, or an approaching tsunami.)


A large pile of Docomodake merchandise.

The company's mascot is Docomodake, a mushroom, which is quite a celebrity in Japan. He is even the hero of a Nintendo DS puzzle and platforming video game, Boing! Docomodake DS on 2007 and 2009; on 2016 or 2015, Nintendo put a Docomodake Mii in the app they called Miitomo, which was also released in North America, Japan and Europe.[23] He also has a wide variety of merchandising such as cell phone straps, keychains, and plush dolls. As one type of advertising method, there are many types of Docomodakes such as mother and father, which symbolizes the plans that NTT Docomo offers.


Shigetaka Kurita, who was part of the team working on NTT DoCoMo's i-mode mobile Internet platform, that has been credited as the first creator of emoji.[24] This has since been corrected. In fact, SoftBank released their emoji set on the DP-211SW mobile phone in 1997. [25]

Investments outside JapanEdit

GSMA Mobile World Congress, Barcelona 2008 99. Note the new logo.

NTT Docomo has a wide range of foreign investments. However, NTT Docomo was not successful in investing in foreign carriers. Docomo had invested very large multibillion-dollar amounts in KPN, KT Freetel, AT&T Wireless, and had to write-off sell all these investments in foreign carriers. As a result, Docomo booked a total of about US$10 billion in losses, while during the same time Docomo's Japan operations were profitable.

In December 2007, NTT Docomo and KT Freetel jointly invested US$200 million for a total of 33% stake in U Mobile Malaysia.

In June 2008 NTT Docomo joined the non-profit Symbian Foundation led by Nokia to co-develop a new Symbian smartphone operating system based on the S60 platform, which resulted in Symbian^2 for the Japanese market.[26]

In December 2006 they acquired Guamcell, the largest phone company in Guam, and changed its name to DOCOMO PACIFIC.

Docomo is working on implementing its FeliCa-based payment system, called iD, overseas. It has already launched the system in Guam, as well as Shanghai and Beijing, China (however, as of November 2010, it has withdrawn iD terminals from all merchants in China).

Docomo CapitalEdit

Working closely with NTT Docomo's business and R&D divisions, Docomo Capital is in charge of NTT Docomo's venture investments in mobile related start-up companies, mainly in the United States and has committed $100M in capital. It has invested in Cooliris, Couchbase, Evernote,, HighlightCam, Swype, TuneWiki, Sigfox and Wiliot[27].[28]

Docomo DigitalEdit

Docomo Digital is the international payments business of NTT DOCOMO. DOCOMO Digital partners with carriers, merchants, OTT services, app stores and payment providers in both developed and emerging markets to facilitate direct carrier billing and other payments su

Hikari TVEdit

Hikari TV (ひかりTV) is a Japanese IPTV service. It was established on March 31, 2008 and was originally owned and operated by the internet service provider NTT Plala.[29] It launched Hikari TV Game, the first cloud gaming service for televisions in Japan, in 2013.[30]

On July 1, 2022, NTT Docomo absorbed and merged the operating company NTT Plala, and on the same day, this service was also incorporated into NTT DoCoMo's service.[31][32] Along with this, the rate plan for new subscribers was changed after the same day.[33]

Aside from offering access to various television channels, Hikari TV also produces its own content, primarily broadcast on the Hikari TV Channel [ja].

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ As of October 1, 2013, the trade name was changed from "株式会社エヌ・ティ・ティ・ドコモ" to "株式会社NTTドコモ".[5]


  1. ^ "About NTT DOCOMO".
  2. ^ a b c d e "FInancial Highlights of NTT DoCoMo" (PDF). NTT DoCoMo.
  3. ^ "2010 Form 10-K, NTT DoCoMo". Google Finance.
  4. ^ "Article 1. (Trade Name). Articles of Incorporation". Retrieved 2013-10-05.
  5. ^ "会社の沿革". Retrieved 2013-10-05.
  6. ^ Friedman, Thomas (2006). The World Is Flat. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux. p. 197. ISBN 9780374292799.
  7. ^ "Headquarters Location Archived 2013-02-16 at the Wayback Machine." NTT Docomo. Retrieved on March 7, 2010.
  8. ^ "Number of subscribers by Carriers|TCA".
  9. ^ "Japan's NTT launches $40 billion buyout of wireless unit Docomo". Reuters. 2020-09-29. Retrieved 2021-03-28.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  10. ^ ドコモ社長に山田副社長が昇格へ (in Japanese). 2008-04-19. Archived from the original on 2008-04-22. Retrieved 2008-04-18.
  11. ^ "Japan's DoCoMo holds out to iPhone mania, but at what cost?". Archived from the original on 2013-07-09. Retrieved 2013-07-05.
  12. ^ "NTT DoCoMo teams-up with McAfee to offer free malware protection for its Android users". 2011. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
  13. ^ "NTT Docomo acquires Italy's Buongiorno". The Times of India. Archived from the original on July 7, 2012. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  14. ^ "The Associated Press: New Prototype Phone Gives Fitness Check". 29 October 2007. Archived from the original on 29 October 2007. Retrieved 27 March 2018.
  15. ^ "ドコモとGoogleが提携──各種サービスのiモード対応などを推進" (in Japanese). ITMedia+D モバイル. Retrieved 2008-01-26.
  16. ^ "YouTube、ドコモの904i/905iシリーズに対応" (in Japanese). ITMedia+D モバイル. Retrieved 2008-01-26.
  17. ^ "Docomo 5G | About DOCOMO | NTT DOCOMO".
  18. ^ "Docomo to launch Japan 5G services March 25, pipping SoftBank to post". 18 March 2020.
  19. ^ "Mobile leaders to unify the Symbian software platform and set the future of mobile free" (Press release). Nokia. 24 June 2008. Archived from the original on 25 March 2012. Retrieved 2011-04-09.
  20. ^ Mingas, Melanie (2021-11-15). "From stratosphere to smartphone NTT DOCOMO trials solar-powered HAPS". Capacity. Capacity Media. Retrieved 2021-11-15.
  21. ^ "Area Mail Disaster Information Service". Archived from the original on 2011-10-25. Retrieved 2011-11-06.
  22. ^ "緊急速報「エリアメール」、及び「緊急速報メール」を利用した国民保護に関する情報の配信を開始" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  23. ^ Bozon, Mark (11 March 2009). "Boing! Docomodake Review". Retrieved 27 March 2018.
  24. ^ Blagdon, Jeff (4 March 2013). "How emoji conquered the world". The Verge. Vox Media. Retrieved 6 November 2013.
  25. ^ "Correcting the Record on the First Emoji Set". 8 March 2019.
  26. ^ "First Symbian^2 phones ship in Japan". Retrieved 27 March 2018.
  27. ^ Mike Freeman (2021-07-27). "Internet of Things sensor startup Wiliot pulls in $200 million from SoftBank Vision Fund". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 2022-07-08.
  28. ^ "About Docomo Capital". NTT Docomo Capital. Retrieved December 23, 2014.
  29. ^ "お知らせ2008年03月31日|ひかりTV". Retrieved 2022-05-22.
  30. ^ "ゲーム専用機不要で楽しめるクラウドゲーム「ひかりTVゲーム」を6月に開始". CNET Japan (in Japanese). 2013-04-17. Retrieved 2022-06-12.
  31. ^ "NTTぷらら、NTTドコモとの事業統合後もサービスはほぼ継続 「dポイント」付与も". ITmedia NEWS (in Japanese). Retrieved 2022-07-22.
  32. ^ "報道発表資料 : ご利用料金のお支払いでdポイントがたまる、新たな「ひかりTV」の提供を開始 | お知らせ | NTTドコモ". (in Japanese). Retrieved 2022-07-22.
  33. ^ "ひかりTV各種サービス名称の変更 | 2022年 | ひかりTV". Retrieved 2022-07-22.

External linksEdit