4 Largest Japanese Mobile Phone Carriers

Most Popular Japanese Cell Phone Companies: Comparison

Mobile phones are essential in daily life. As a tool for communicating with friends or coworkers, looking up something, translating, and contacting in an emergency, a mobile phone has many important roles in our lives. We can’t think about life without a mobile phone anymore.

When you have a mobile phone in Japan, it’s important to choose the best mobile carrier for you. Many mobile phone carriers have many plans, from the largest carriers to cheaper SIM carriers. According to your usage conditions, you can pick up the one most suitable for you on the point of both data capacity and the price.

Though new cheaper SIM carriers are increasing these days, I would love to introduce the 4 largest Japanese mobile phone carriers in this article. The 4 largest Japanese mobile phone carriers are Docomo, Au, SoftBank, and Rakuten Mobile. As they have their stores in many cities, you can pop in and consult with their staff if you have a problem with your phone. The connection is much better than that of cheaper carriers. These points would be helpful for you when you start your life in an unfamiliar environment.

Let’s see the details and find the best carrier for you.

1. Docomo

Docomo was established in 1991. Docomo originated in the company of Pocket Bell, the former communication tool, in 1968. Since its establishment, Docomo has stood on the cutting edge of the mobile phone industry in Japan. Currently, Docomo expands its plans from the traditional big data plan to the newest small data plans to meet more customers’ demands. Docomo has the largest number of shares in the Japanese mobile phone industry.

Popular plan: There are 2 popular plans. The one is a big data plan, “5G Gigaho Premia”, and the other is a gradient plan, “5G Giga Light”.

Price (month): 5G Gigaho Premia Plan is ¥7,315 per month. With 5G Giga Light Plan, the price varies from ¥3,465 to ¥6,765 according to your usage.

Data limitation: 5G Gigaho Premia Plan has no data limit. 5G Giga Light Plan has a 7GB data limitation per month.

Phone call: In both plans, a phone call is available for ¥770 per month within 5 mins call. A phone call with family is for free.

▶︎Click here for more details about Docomo!

2. Au

Au started its mobile phone service in 2000. Au originated in KDDI, which was established by merging 3 big telecommunication companies.

Au is the most popular carrier in Japan. Au offers many plans that include annual fees for other subscription services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. Moreover, if you join the Au smart pass premium, you can get many benefits like a discount movie ticket and security support in an emergency. So, if you’re a movie or entertainment lover, I would love to recommend you Au.

Popular plan: There are 2 popular plans. One is a big data plan, “Unlimited Use Max 5G”, and the other is a gradient plan, “Pitatto Plan 5G”.

Price (month): Unlimited Use Max 5G Plan is ¥7,238 per month. The price of Pitatto Plan 5G depends on your usage. At least the price is ¥3,465 and at most ¥6,765.

Data limitation: Unlimited Use Max 5G Plan has no data limit. Pitatto Plan 5G has a 7 GB data limitation per month.

Phone call: In both plans, a phone call is available for ¥880 per month within 5 mins call. A phone call with family is for free.

▶︎Click here for more details about Au!

3. SoftBank

SoftBank originated in Japan Telecom in 1991. SoftBank attracted people’s attention with an impressive CM of the Shirato Family. As SoftBank is affiliated with other services like Yahoo! and PayPay, if you are a heavy user of Yahoo! shopping or PayPay, you will get lots of benefits such as a discount or point refunds. There is a plan for a beginner of smartphones.

Popular plan: There are 2 popular plans. One is a big data plan, “Merihari Unlimited”, and the other is a gradient plan, “Mini Fit Plan+”.

Price (month): Merihari Unlimited Plan is ¥7,238 per month. Mini Fit Plan+ depends on your usage. At least the price is ¥3,278 and at most ¥5,478.

Data limitation: Merihari Unlimited Plan has no data limit. Mini Fit Plan+ has a 3 GB data limitation per month.

Phone call: In both plans, a phone call is available for ¥880 per month within 5 mins call. A phone call with family is for free.

▶︎Click here for more details about SoftBank!

4. Rakuten Mobile

Rakuten Mobile is the newest carrier in the 4 major services. Rakuten Mobile has the only plan, Rakuten UN-LIMIT VII. Its coverage area consists of the Rakuten connection area and the Au connection area. In the Rakuten connection area, there is no data limitation while there is a limitation of 5 GB per month in the Au connection area. If you use over 20 GB, you can keep using data without limitation for ¥3,278/month.

Popular plan: Rakuten UN-LIMIT VII

Price (month): ¥1,078-¥3,278

Data limitation: 1GB – unlimited.

Phone call: A phone call is available for totally free if you use the Rakuten Link app.

▶︎Click here for more details about Rakuten Mobile!

Thank you for reading till the end!! Did you find the best carrier which suits you? Or do you feel the monthly price of these carriers is expensive and look for a cheaper one?

Japan Wireless is a telecommunication service carrier specializing in foreign people who live in Japan. It serves SIM cards for 7 GB/ 10 GB/ 25 GB. The monthly price is ¥2,728 for 7 GB/ ¥3,278 for 10 GB/¥3,828 for 25 GB. All of them include free domestic phone calls. You can order through the website and cancel anytime without cancellation fees.

The most attractive point is that English support is available anytime. You can skip complicated contracts with Japan Wireless while you are required to complete an annoying process to sign up a contract for mobile carriers. All you need to do is to order a SIM card online. If you’re interested in it, please visit the site below.

▶︎Click here for more details about the SIM cards! 

Japan Wireless has a pocket WiFi service as well. If you want to use unlimited data, you don’t have WiFi at home, you stay in Japan for a short term, or you need the Internet environment immediately, then I recommend this service. Let’s find out more about its pocket wifi service!!

▶︎Click here for more details about the pocket WiFi with unlimited data usage! 

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