NTT DoCoMo, Inc. announced today that the company and its eight regional companies will launch the portal site to provide PDA (personal digital assistant) device users with a wide variety of content and applications beginning March 1, 2002.
The infogate portal can be accessed via a browser-equipped PDA connected to any DoCoMo PDC, FOMA, PHS or DoPa mobile phone. Information about compatible PDAs will be available at www.nttdocomo.com.
DoCoMo decided to introduce the service following the launch of its third-generation FOMA mobile service, which offers high-speed data transmission in packet and circuit-switched modes. At the same time, DoCoMo expects to capitalize on the growing popularity of PDA devices with the new service.
Infogate users will be able to access both general information, such as news, weather, banking and maps, and online applications, such as groupware.
Infogate can also be used as a gateway to customized online applications. For instance, corporations can use the service to provide PDA-equipped employees in remote locations with exclusive access to company information, such as client data and contract details.
Both individuals and groups can contract for the service. In the case of a group contract, content and applications are standardized for the entire group (individual members cannot access content or applications not included in the group service contract).
Another convenient feature, dubbed "Live! Information Distribution Function," allows both general news and company-specific information (current inventories, etc.) to be automatically updated via e-mail to the user's PDA (requires additional contract).
Infogate service costs include a basic monthly fee, information usage charges and connection charges:
Basic monthly fee
The infogate portal service charges a basic monthly fee of just 100 yen. An additional basic monthly fee of 50 yen is also charged for group contracts.
Information usage charges
Separate information charges may apply, depending on the application service provider.
The charges for connecting to the NTT DoCoMo mobile network to use the infogate portal service are separate from the above fees and charges.
DoCoMo branch offices, DoCoMo Shops, DoCoMo telephone centers and all other DoCoMo sales locations nationwide will begin accepting applications for the service from March 1. Application for group-option contracts will be accepted at DoCoMo Shops and other selected DoCoMo locations.