|The following information is true and accurate at the time of publication.
June 18, 1999
Sony Enters Telecommunications Business|
Group to Offer Wireless Local Loop Data Transmission Service in Japan
(Tokyo, Japan) - Sony Corporation today announced that, following receipt of a Type I Telecommunications License, it will establish a subscriber-based fixed Wireless Local Loop (WLL) access system over the quasi-millimeter and millimeter wavelength frequency bands in Japan.
The receipt of a Type I Telecommunications license will allow Sony to establish its own, independent telecommunications infrastructure. Sony plans to use this infrastructure to provide customers with a "total service" solution that connects personal and home network AV appliances to existing high capacity telecommunications lines, and thereby establish a new network business platform.
Sony will provide a wireless telecommunications connection employing a WLL system, which from the users' perspective serves as "first one mile" of a high-speed, bulk data transfer solution, corresponding to a traditional access line. The benefits are as follows:
|- ||Allows for high-speed, two-way transmission of high bandwidth data|
|- ||Eliminates the need for widespread implementation of high capacity fiber-optic cable|
|- ||The relatively low cost of base terminals and user-side reception/transmission gear makes it possible to provide inexpensive, high-quality bulk data transmission service|
|- ||Easy establishment of removable base stations allows for flexibility in providing temporary facilities for events|
Sony will implement Internet Protocol (IP), a fundamental technology behind the explosive growth of the Internet, as the basic data transmission format for its WLL system in order to build its network business.
Sony predicts the first users to be small office/ home office (SOHO) customers requiring bulk data transfer services and individuals characterized as "heavy users" of network services, but it also plans to develop applications that will make the service attractive to the general public. Service is planned to commence by July 2000. It will be implemented first in the Kanto, Tokai, and Kinki regions of Japan, with plans to increase the scale of operations to a nationwide basis by the end of the year 2000. The initial investment made in facilities and equipment over the next three years is forecast to total approximately 10 billion yen (approximately U.S. $83.5 million).
Further, Sony will couple its WLL service with Sony Communications Network Inc.'s vast experience as one of Japan's largest Internet Service Provider (So-Net) to quickly establish a business that will be capable of providing customers with an inexpensive "total solution" that integrates both access line and network service.
Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, communications and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. Its music, pictures and computer entertainment operations make Sony one of the most comprehensive companies in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of over $56 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 1999.
Sony Corporation's homepage URL: http://www.sony.co.jp.