“Biweekly Smartphone News” is a series that summarizes news related to the mobile industry, including smartphones, announced in the last two weeks. This time, we will deliver three topics such as the 5G SA service started by DoCoMo and the handling of the cheap smartphone “AQUOS wish2” starting with au and UQ mobile.
au and UQ mobile start handling “AQUOS wish2”
From September 9, 2022, KDDI will release Sharp’s entry-level smartphone “AQUOS wish2 SHG08” from each brand of au and UQ mobile. “AQUOS wish2” is a minor change model of “AQUOS wish” that appeared at the end of 2021. The body and display are the same, but the SoC has been changed from the entry-level “Snapdragon 480” to the middle-range “Snapdragon 695 5G”, and the pre-installed OS has been upgraded from Android 11 to Android 12. The change in SoC has improved processing performance by about 33% and graphic performance by about 19%. Since the OS version upgrade policy of twice in two years has not changed, it is expected that the OS will be supported up to the Android 14th generation.
The price of the terminal is 26,180 yen (tax included, same below). With au, you can use the “Smartphone Toku program”, and if you return the terminal after 2 years, the user’s burden will be 22,001 yen. UQ mobile is 26,180 yen above when changing models or transferring numbers from au, but 4,180 yen for MNP contracts (8,580 yen if not subscribing to “Increase Option II”), 15,180 yen for new contracts (“Increase Option” 19,580 yen if you do not join).
From August 23, 2022, NTT DoCoMo has launched a 5G SA (5G Stand Alone) service for general consumers. In addition, ahamo was also started at the same time.
NTT Docomo had launched a 5G SA service for corporations at the end of 2021, but with the launch of this service, 5G SA can now be used on smartphones. The conventional 5G service is called the NSA (Non Stand Alone) method, and although data communication is 5G, control signals use 4G. As a result, the NSA method was only able to achieve part of the original performance of 5G. However, the 5G SA system fully supports the functions that 5G was aiming for, such as ultra-multiple connections, ultra-low latency, ultra-high reliability, and “network slicing” that can optimize network performance according to purpose. For this reason, it is often referred to as “true 5G”.
The newly launched service enables ultra-high-speed data communication with a maximum download speed of 4.9 Gbps and a maximum upload speed of 1.1 Gbps, which is significantly faster than the NSA maximum speed of 480 Mbps. These communication speeds are achieved by using Sub-6 and millimeter waves at the same time.
At the start of the service, the corresponding area will be developed as a spot in some locations of major terminal stations nationwide.
The compatible terminals are only four models: Sharp “AQUOS R7 SH-52C”, Samsung “Galaxy S22 SC-51C”, “Galaxy S22 Ultra SC-52C”, and Sony “Xperia 1 IV SO-51C”. Among them, three models except “AQUOS R7 SH-52C” will be supported after the software update is distributed.
To use 5G SA, you need to subscribe to the optional service “5G SA Option”. This option is a paid service with a monthly fee of 550 yen (tax included), but a campaign with an undecided end date is being carried out and you can subscribe for free.
Xiaomi’s foldable smartphone “Xiaomi MIX Fold 2” is compatible with Docomo and KDDI! ? Expected to be released in Japan
On August 22, 2022, Xiaomi announced the details of the foldable smartphone “Xiaomi MIX Fold 2” in Japanese. This product was announced in mainland China in early August, and is a notable model equipped with a foldable display of about 8.02 inches that supports 2160 x 1914 display and “Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1”. The thin body is also a feature, with a thickness of 11.2 mm when folded and a thickness of 5.4 mm when the display is opened.
In the content of this announcement, there is a disclaimer that “Japan release is undecided at this time.” However, looking at the published specification table, the 4G compatible frequency band list includes B18 dedicated to KDDI and B19 dedicated to NTT DoCoMo. For 5G, in addition to the n77 and n78 global bands, the n79 used by NTT Docomo is included. Although n79 is also used by mainland China’s telecommunications carrier China Mobile, 4G B18 and B19 are unnecessary outside of Japan. In other words, as far as communication performance is concerned, it can be read that it is conscious of using in Japan.
The price in the home country is 8,999 yuan, which is about 180,000 yen when converted to Japanese yen.
Summary of update information for smartphones and mobile phones
We have summarized the software update information for smartphones, tablets, mobile phones, etc. released between August 20th and September 5th, 2022. Note that terminals that are regularly updated are excluded