Japanese telecom behemoth NTT Docomo has announced it will offer free internet to foreigners visiting the country. However, the move is not an initiative to entice more visitors to visit the land of the rising Sun. Then why Docomo offers free internet? Interestingly, it has an innovative business strategy stitched on to it.
NTT DOCOMO has announced a new prepaid plan and introduced its Japan Welcome SIM. The SIM offers a Zero Plan (Plan 0) that allow overseas visitors in Japan to access the Internet for free via the DOCOMO mobile network, from December 26. The free service will initially be available in Hokkaido and Niigata districts, after which other areas will be added sequentially.
Besides the Plan 0 under Japan Welcome SIM, the company is also planning to launch three new plans – Paln S, Plan M and Plan L where S, M and L stand for small, medium and large.
How Does Docomo Offers Free Internet
The Japanese telecom operator had launched a very innovative plan to offer free internet to the foreign visitors who visit the country after December 26. Though DOCOMO has launched various fee-based plans for Japan Welcome SIM since July, the Plan 0 is the first free plan in the series. Docomo offers free internet only to those users who watch certain videos!!
To avail free internet in Japan when they visit, customers are required to view designated advertisements in their home countries before visiting Japan. Plan 0 is being offered in collaboration with local governments and business partners that are interested in targeting specific foreign visitors through advertisements and by setting various conditions for service usage, such as application periods, SIM pick-up periods, SIM handover locations, total SIMs to be offered, and more.
Japan Welcome SIM is provided as a 3-in-1 SIM card compatible with regular, micro and nano formats. Access to the DOCOMO network is provided for 15 days under various plans — Plan 0, Plan S, Plan M and Plan L. Plan 0 offers free Internet in exchange for viewing a certain number of video ads and completing a survey prior to arriving in Japan.
Plan S offers ad-free access at 128 Kbps for Yen 1,080, Plan M offers high-speed internet at max. 788 Mbps on 4G for Yen 1,836 for 600 MB and Plan L is offered for Yen 2,376 for 1.2 GB. While users can recharge their respective plans, alternatively, the SIMs can be topped up with free high-speed data through methods such as watching video ads or completing surveys. Even after purchased high-speed data amounts have been used up, access to the network is still available at 128 Kbps for the remainder of the 15-day period.