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| WinStar, KDD Set Up Venture for Wireless Access Service
January 8, 1999 (TOKYO) -- U.S.-based WinStar Communications Inc., KDD Corp.,
Japan's largest provider of international telephone services, and Sumitomo
Corp. announced that they have established a company to offer high-speed
wireless access service.
|On Jan. 5, the new company, which will be called KDD WinStar Corp., submitted
its application for a Type I carrier license to the Ministry of Posts and
The company was capitalized at 1 billion yen (US$8.9 million), with KDD
providing 55 percent of the funds, WinStar 35 percent, and Sumitomo 10
Its headquarters will be in the KDD Building in Tokyo's Shinjuku ward. The
firm's wireless access service is scheduled to be launched in May, and it
seeks to generate annual sales of 1 billion yen after the initial three years
The company will offer short-range wireless links to connect customers and
telecom operators. Fees for the service are not available as yet, but they
are expected to be set at a level lower than those for the discount "Digital
Access" short-range leased-line service offered by Nippon Telegraph and
Telephone Corp. (NTT).
Also, customers of the new service will be able to use it along with all the
other services offered by KDD, such as long distance and international call
services and those for accessing the Internet.
The service will offer two types of connections. The first is a one-to-one
link between a user and a relay base station (P - P connection), and the
other is a one-to-multi link between a relay station and a multiple number of
users (P - MP connection).
KDD said the service will offer high speeds, with maximum data transmission
rates of 156Mbps for the P - P type connections and 10Mbps for the P - MP
connections. The P - P connections will use a 22GHz radio frequency band and
the P - MP connections will utilize the 38GHz band.
Areas where the service will be available have not been determined. However,
the company plans to build many relay stations, mainly in major urban areas.
Customers will need to be located within 4km of a relay station to make use
of the P - P connection service, and within 1km to utilize the P - MP
The venture is considering the feasibility of locating relay stations on
buildings owned by companies in the Sumitomo group.
The advantages of using radio links rather than conventional wire lines
include the fact that quick changes can be made to the system. Also, the
costs to construct the system are lower because there is less need for
KDD doesn't own access lines. It leases short-range lines from other
operators, such as NTT and the regional new common carriers.
There are signs that other companies are planning to enter the business of
offering similar short-range telecom services. In an effort to boost
competition, the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications in September 1998
made public its guidelines for allocating radio frequencies to businesses
intending to offer wireless access services.
According to those guidelines, for example, only four operators will be
allowed to offer 22GHz band wireless access services in the Tokyo
Since July 1998, Japan Telecom Co., Ltd. has offered a wireless access
service that covers some large urban areas, including both Tokyo and Osaka.
Therefore, because the number of companies that will be allowed to offer
services is limited, other operators will likely move quickly and follow
Japan Telecom and KDD in applying for permission to launch similar services.
More information in English is available at: http://www.winstar.com/PressRelease/
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