updated 12:05 pm EST, Thu January 26, 2012
KDDI gives optimistic outlook because of Apple
Second-largest Japanese carrier KDDI showed an immediate effect from its getting the iPhone 4S Thursday after it upped its outlook for 2012. It now expects to get 2.6 percent more revenue in 2012 than it did before owing to becoming one of Apple's latest official carriers. Although its profit dipped 17 percent in the fall to the equivalent of $697.1 million, it saw its data revenue go up 8.2 points, mostly as customers switched from their conventionally Japanese basic feature phones to smartphones.
The decline came not from sales or smartphone subsidies but from a combination of a tax structure change and a drop in the revenues from voice, again a sign of the smartphone transition.
Apple had touted Japan as a particular strong point for iPhone growth in the fall and may see an improvement to its fortunes similar to that which it saw in the US. A decision not to adapt the iPhone for Japanese carriers besides SoftBank let Android take control in the country in 2011 as both local companies and a few major outsiders like Samsung finally began focusing on smartphones for the Japanese market.
KDDI's nature as a CDMA provider kept it out of Apple's reach until the iPhone 4S. Its addition now leaves just NTT DoCoMo having to rely on Android as its main source of smartphone customers. [via Wall Street Journal]