JR East and NTT DoCoMo to Consider Developing Common Infrastructure for Suica e-Money and Osaifu-Keitai Credit Brand
East Japan Railway Company
NTT DoCoMo, Inc.
July 28, 2005
East Japan Railway Company (JR East) and NTT DoCoMo, Inc. (DoCoMo) announced today that they have signed a basic agreement to discuss joint development and management of common infrastructure for JR East's Suica® e-money and DoCoMo's upcoming "Osaifu-Keitai" credit card service, both based on FeliCa® smart card technology.
Suica is JR East's IC card for railway travel and shopping, while Osaifu-Keitai refers to DoCoMo mobile phones equipped with contactless IC cards that can serve as credit cards and perform other useful functions.
Under the agreement, the two companies will consider the development of a reader/writer compatible with both companies' services and the creation and management of a common center that connects the reader/writers with various settlement systems.
A common reader/writer and settlement center will encourage retail shops to offer the services because they will only need a single reader/writer, saving space and reducing costs. The companies hope this will increase the number of service users by allowing shoppers the option of using either Suica e-money or the Osaifu-Keitai credit card service. The companies feel that working together will promote their services more effectively than if they were to act separately.
JR East and DoCoMo aim to reach the final agreement within 2005.
About East Japan Railway
East Japan Railway Company (JR East) is the largest passenger railway company in the world, serving about 16 million passengers daily. The company's 7,526.8 km rail network covers the eastern half of Honshu (Japan's main island), including the Tokyo metropolitan area. The company has 1,697 stations in its service area, and operates more than 12,000 trains on conventional lines and 307 trains on the Shinkansen daily. In addition to its railway business, JR East operates other kinds of business such as retail shops, restaurants in stations, hotels, shopping centers, and office building management.
The company introduced its "Suica" IC card in Tokyo metropolitan area stations in November 2001 and the number of holders now exceeds 10 million. The area where Suica can be used is being steadily expanded.
About NTT DoCoMo
NTT DoCoMo is the world's leading mobile communications company, serving more than 50 million customers. The company offers a wide variety of leading-edge mobile multimedia services, including i-mode®, which provides e-mail and Internet access to over 44 million subscribers as the world's most popular mobile Internet service, and FOMA®, launched in 2001 as the world's first 3G mobile service based on W-CDMA. In addition to wholly owned subsidiaries in Europe, North America and Asia, the company is expanding its global reach through strategic alliances with mobile and multimedia service providers in Asia-Pacific and Europe. NTT DoCoMo is listed on the Tokyo (9437), London (NDCM), and New York (DCM) stock exchanges. For more information,
i-mode and FOMA are trademarks or registered trademarks of NTT
DoCoMo, Inc. in Japan and other countries.
Osaifu-Keitai is a registered trademark of NTT DoCoMo, Inc. in Japan.
Osaifu-Keitai refers to mobile phones equipped with contactless IC card, as well as its useful functions/services enabled by the IC card. With this function, mobile phones can be utilized as electronic money, credit card, electronic ticket, membership card, airline ticket, and more.
Suica is a registered trademark of East Japan Railway Company.
FeliCa is a contactless IC Card technology developed by Sony Corporation.
FeliCa is a trademark of Sony Corporation.