This is a guest post contributed by Top 10 Mobile Phones, a UK mobile phone comparison website
The UK and Japan both have huge mobile phone markets which belie the relatively small physical size of both isolated island nations. The UK currently has around 70 million mobile phones in use, which means that there are more than enough for each and every member of the 61 million citizens. Japan has closer to 110 million mobiles in their market, but with a population of nearly 130 million the UK has it beat in terms of market saturation.
Japan`s Key Companies and Money Matters
Japan`s telecommunications industry is worth over £1.5 billion every year and mobile phones makes up a large chunk of that. Japan is also home to some of the most innovative mobile phones and the latest mobile phone networking technology. They were the first country to give consumers access to the internet on their mobiles a decade ago and they continue to innovate on the technology side of things. A majority of mobile phones sold in Japan use the latest 3G technology to offer fast mobile internet and close to 50 million new phones are sold every year. This is because like the UK there is an upgrade culture which sees most people replacing their mobile phone handset every 12 to 18 months. Japan has several major companies producing mobile phones including Toshiba, Mitsubishi, NEC and Panasonic. In 2006 many of these providers suffered from over saturated foreign markets. As a result many withdrew their offerings from countries like China in order to focus their efforts on the domestic Japanese market. This is why many phones which are produced in Japan never get sold overseas. The largest mobile phone network in Japan is NTT DoCoMo and a third of its parent company is owned by the Japanese government, partially explaining its incumbent dominance of the market.
UK`s Key Companies and Money Matters
The UK does not have any of the major manufacturing companies like Japan, but it does have a public with a hunger for the latest gadgetry and some of the most powerful mobile phone networks in the world. Vodafone is an exemplar of this model and is currently the largest mobile telecommunications company in the world, estimated to be worth in excess of £75 billion. Britain has also been the birthplace for other telecommunications giants like Telefonica who operate under the O2 brand in the UK and who were developed by British Telecom in the 1990s. Unlike Japan there are five major mobile phone providers and with the recent merger of T-Mobile and Orange the market has become both more consolidated and as some argue more competitive, meaning better value for the consumer.
Mobile Phone Technologies
In both the UK and Japan mobile phones are evolving on what seems like a daily basis. Japan has been the hub for mobile developments in recent years, with mobile phones becoming more and more versatile within everyday life. The use of mobile phones not just to communicate but to pay for goods and services like a virtual wallet has been recently trialled in Japan.