Tokyo: NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile phone operator, said Monday it spent $45.5 million to take a 35% share in a US company that makes multimedia technology for its mobile phones.
The cellular carrier made the investment in PacketVideo Corp., a San Diego-based company that makes a mutlimedia player used in its handsets, the companies said in a press release. PacketVideo is a subsidiary of NextWave Wireless Inc.
NTT DoCoMo said the purchase was made to strengthen its music and video services domestically.
In Japan, where most phones come with digital TV tuners and software to play back audio and video files, operators have traditionally had strict control over the software and standards used in mobile phones on their networks.
But the industry is warily eyeing popular foreign entrants like Apple’s iPhone. Softbank Corp., the carrier that exclusively offers the iPhone in Japan, has used the device to lure subscribers from its rivals.