Telcordia announced that they are the mobile virtual network enabler (MVNE) for KDDI America's MVNO, KDDI Mobile, which offers "unparalleled choice of prepaid services and tariffs targeted to Japanese communities in the United States." KDDI Mobile will offer free international calls to Japan as well as roadside assistance in Japanese, according to its website. KDDI America announced its MVNO plans back in April, and the industry drew numerous comparisons between KDDI Mobile and Helio since they are both (at least half-owned) by an Asian carrier. KDDI America is a wholly-owned subsidiary of KDDI and Helio is half-owned by SK Telecom and Earthlink.
KDDI Mobile has licenses to operate in 49 states in the U.S., which excludes Alaska. The MVNO runs on Sprint's network and offers LG and Sanyo handsets. According to the original announcement from KDDI America about KDDI Mobile, the service should have gone live in April, but has yet to launch.
KDDI Mobile leverages Telcordia's hosted solution for MVNOs to provide a real-time pre-paid service that includes flexible rates on calls to and from Japan. Telcordia plays MVNE to other MVNOs, like Virgin Mobile USA, Kajeet, Disney Mobile and Flying J. Apart from the hosting, Telcordia provides a mobile content catalog that includes a selection of more than 25,000 ringtones, wallpapers and games, as well as real-time news feeds.
For more on KDDI's MVNO launch:
- see this press release from Telcordia
- check out the KDDI Mobile site