Softbank Mobile has signed a contract with Ericsson in Japan for an LTE network. The Ericsson network will cover Japan's major cities – Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya – which together account for 70% of the country's total data and voice traffic. Softbank Mobile is currently Japan's third largest mobile operator, with more than 29 million subscribers.
Ericsson will upgrade Softbank's packet core network, including systems integration and deployment of an Evolved Packet Core (EPC) solution, and build a new LTE radio access network using RBS 6000 multi-standard base stations.
Junichi Miyakawa, executive vice president, director and CTO at Softbank, commented: 'To fulfil our customers' expectations, we continue to improve our networks. With LTE, customers get increased speed and decreased latency, while they will enjoy a wide range of new services and applications. With Ericsson's support, we will be able to offer our customers high quality LTE services.'
Jan Signell, president of Ericsson Japan, said: 'During 2012, many new smartphones, notebooks and tablets with LTE capabilities will be launched in Japan. This will lead to a strong increase in consumer demand for higher data speeds and throughput, a demand that Softbank Mobile will be able to meet thanks to the state of the art LTE network that we will rapidly deploy.
Ericsson has signed 45 LTE/EPC contracts in 23 countries on five continents. The global LTE population coverage is 325 million, of which 215 million are covered by Ericsson networks.