Japanese mobile operator KDDI plans to encourage businesses to replace their fixed-line phone systems with smartphones by offering a service to create low-cost communication networks. KDDI’s service will allow firms to centrally manage and update their smartphone security software. An employee will be able to receive business calls on a single phone and choose which number is displayed to the recipient. The monthly fee will come to JPY 1,365 (US $13.96) per line, about 10 percent less than a voice-only plan. Calls from a smartphone to a landline number will cost JPY 8.4 (US $0.09) per three minutes.
KDDI’s idea seems to us a good one. As business users continue to increase their reliance on mobile devices—especially smartphones—and as corporations expand their embrace of BYOD (bring your own device) policies, it stands to reason that there would be a ready market for fully wireless solutions for enterprises. Replacing fixed-line might not be for everybody, but those companies that can do so will likely see significant cost savings and streamlining of their daily telephony operations.