Mr. Olli-Pekka Heinonen, the Finnish Minister of Transport and Communications visiting Japan, made on November 16 the first inter-continental UMTS phone call to Finland. This was the first call of its kind between two operators' 3G networks, the NTT DoCoMo network in Japan and the Sonera network in Finland. UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) is the standard for third-generation mobile network (3G network).
The phone call was made between Mr. Olli-Pekka Heinonen, who is on a visit to Japan, and Mrs. Anni Vepsalainen, Senior Vice President, Sonera Mobile Operations, at Sonera's premises in Finland.
Mr. Heinonen's visit to Japan will last until Sunday. The aim of the visit is to enhance cooperation between Finland and Japan, especially in the development of mobile Internet. Included in his program are meetings with the Mr. Toranosuke Katayama, Minister of Public Management, Home Affairs, Posts and Telecommunications, and Mr. Heizou Takenaka, Minister of State.
Mr. Heinonen made the phone call from Tokyo, using the commercial 3G FOMA network of the Japanese mobile operator DoCoMo. The phone call was made with a Japanese phone and received with a Nokia 3G phone at Sonera's premises in Finland.
Sonera's 3G network is based on the third-generation WCDMA* standard, and the first phase of it is supplied by Nokia. The phone receiving the call is an early version of a commercial Nokia WCDMA phone. Nokia's GSM/WCDMA phones will be available on the market during the second half of 2002.
NTT DoCoMo launched its commercialised WCDMA-based FOMA (Freedom Of Mobile multimedia Access) 3G service on October 1, 2001. DoCoMo has announced that it will be promoting open mobile architecture for WCDMA-based 3G services.