Apple negotiating iPhone launch in Japan

Apple is negotiating with Japan's top mobile phone carrier to launch the iPhone in Japan, though the cut of subscriber revenue that Apple wants has been a sticking point, an Associated Press report said.

The Associated Press report, quoting The Wall Street Journal, also said Apple CEO Steve Jobs met recently with NTT DoCoMo president Masao Nakamura to discuss launching the iPhone in Japan.

Apple has said that it plans to launch the device in Asia in 2008 but has not provided details.

NTT DoCoMo had nearly 53 million subscribers and commanded more than half of Japan's mobile phone market at the end of September, but has struggled to add new users in recent months amid fierce competition from KDDI and Softbank, which have slashed rates and launched aggressive sales promotions, the Associated Press report said.

Apple and NTT DoCoMo are still negotiating the terms of a deal, with one stumbling block being Apple's demands to receive the same percentage of subscriber revenue from NTT DoCoMo that it receives from other carriers, according to the report.

If a deal with NTT DoCoMo falls through, Apple is also talking with Softbank, the report added.

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