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i-mode lands on Telstra - What's New? i-mode lands on Telstra

11 June 2004
Written by William Shi

A new wave of mobile internet services will hit our shores very soon. NTT DoCoMo, Inc., Japan's leading mobile communications provider, and Telstra Corporation Limited will be in partnership to launch i-mode® in Australia. Under the signed agreement, Telstra is licensed to provide a new and exciting assortment of mobile internet services such emails, games and other applications.

So what is the big fuss about i-mode®?

Telstra described it as “a premium wireless experience” and with over 43 million subscribers currently to i-mode® it is definitely serious stuff.

WAP vs i-mode®

I hear you asking what is the difference between i-mode® and WAP. Usability is similar but the technology used is very different between both. Both services charge users for the amount of data send or received. This enables users to keep connected all day and only pay for what is used.

For GPRS, users have to physically connect onto WAP. While for i-mode® there is no need to dial-up with i-mode®, once the phone is turned on, the service is already connected. Unlikely your normal POP emails, where you have to log on to check and recheck before finally receiving it. i-mode® is different and works similar to SMS. Once it is sent it will be instantly delivered to the other party’s handset. Simple!

GPRS currently at optimisation, the user will experience data speeds of between 60 - 120 kbps. For i-mode® data speed will be approximately 384 kbps with FOMA (Freedom of Multimedia Access) 3G technologies. For the information of web designers, i-mode® web sites are written in cHTML (compact HTML, also known as iHTML), which is a condensed version of the normal HTML and is relatively easier to learn for website developers than WAP's mark-up language WML.

What can the i-mode® phone be used for?

The list will be long, but here is a short list to appreciate where i-mode® can take you! For starters - access the Internet directly, send and receive e-mail between i-mode users, also to and from personal computers and handheld devices. For example, you can connect to sites to reserve airline and concert tickets, find a good restaurant, check your bank balance or transfer money, read news and weather reports, check train schedules and city maps, download wallpaper images and ringtones and the list goes on and on.

The new era is here - i-mode®! After all, i-mode is leading the world in mobile internet innovation with over 43 million subscribers and 80,000 content sites in nine different countries (Japan, Germany, Netherlands, Taiwan, Belgium, France, Spain, Italy and Greece). They must have done something right! And I definitely will be amongst the first to sign up!

Further information on i-mode® can be found on:

 

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