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March 4th, 2003
3D Consortium Study Session
(chaired by the Amusement Working Group (WG) and the Service/Contents Section)
(Venue: New Stage Yokohama)
May 13th, 2004
Mr. Kusaba delivering a lecture on the application service "BREW."
There was a demonstration of a fortune-telling game using mobile phones by Namco during the break.
Four lecturers were invited for the study session under the theme "Amusement Keitai (mobile phones)." The contents of the lectures were about the "past and future" of mobile phones, which now seem to have established their global position as one of the most accessible and familiar devices for amusement. In addition, there has been an intermediate report of the experiments for 3D content distribution for mobile phones as promoted by the Service and Contents Section. After these lecturers made their presentations, they participated in a panel discussion. There were 41 members at the study session for a total of 65 people attending.

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3D Consortium Study Session (At Namco, Yokohama)
Lecture Summary
Mr. Masahiro Kusaba
Senior Manager, Business Development, QUALCOMM JAPAN Inc.

Mr. Masaya Terasaki
Research Engineer
Nokia Research Center, Nokia Japan Co., Ltd.

Mr. Shigekazu Ishimura
Senior Managing Executive Officer President
Contents & Expansion Company, NAMCO Limited

Mr. Masaharu Terada
General Manager, Strategies for the Next Generation Room, CYBIRD Co., Ltd.

Mr. Chikara Horikoshi
3D Consortium Services, Contents Section Sub-leader
Future of Mobile Phone Games Pioneered by BREW

Senior Manager, Business Development, QUALCOMM JAPAN Inc.
Mr. Masahiro Kusaba
In Japan, au (KDDI Corporation) offers a new application service called "BREW." I would like to introduce some information about this service, how it operates, and what benefits we can realize with the service.

BREW started in February 2003 in Japan. The service is available for around 3.5 million mobile phones as of April 2004, but au is planning to make the service available for all of its models, which will be up to 8 million this year. The use of its features is achieved by using a baseband chip, with BREW acting as an operating system for mobile phones, and is used for the distribution of applications and also for the billing of content services.

BREW needs less overhead than JAVA, because it does not need virtual machines. Therefore, as an operating system, it has advantages such as (1) faster execution of applications is possible, (2) cooperative execution of multiple applications is possible, (3) wider selections of applications are possible, because it is able to use mobiles' resources directly (it is able to control devices such as GPS, and Blue Tooth directly), and (4) it is possible to access various servers using TCP/IP or UDP and not by HTTP. However, security validation either by operators or by third party certification bodies is essential.

Currently, 284 applications including 3D games are offered for BREW. Most of them are now used for entertainment, however, we expect it to be used as a business application platform by utilizing its flexibility.

Using BREW, it is possible to offer high-speed and high-capacity applications, and optimum business models with various billing systems for mobile phones. In addition, a media mix of animation, music and comics can be offered, becoming ubiquitous services by merging sound and multimedia services, and a new mobile entertainment market beyond the one for traditional PC's, PDA's or dedicated game machines will be created.

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Nokia's Content Platform

Research Engineer
Nokia Research Center, Nokia Japan Co., Ltd.
Mr. Masaya Terasaki
I am mainly going to explain about the global mobile phone market for Nokia, the contents of developers' platforms terminals, and how to obtain Software Development Kits for their development.

It is said that the global mobile phone market was around 400 - 500 million terminals in 2003, and Nokia has sold a little less than 180 million terminals. It offers various terminals including the ones for JAVA and for Symbian. Terminals that support the Nokia 7600 Japanese Version will be available in the middle of June 2004 in Japan. Series 40, Series 60, Series 80 and Series 90 are offered as developers' platforms for mobile terminals. Today, I am going to speak mainly about Series 60.

Series 60 is an application platform based on the Symbian OS, and is licensed to other mobile phone manufacturers. Series 60 is a platform for general applications, so it is possible to develop any type of application including business applications as well as those for consumers.

When it will be sold in Japan is undecided, however, it is possible to use Series 60 as a demonstration platform for development. In this case, information related to the development and the device is offered for free through the "Forum Nokia" site (in Japanese and English). A programming guide for developers using Symbian is now being localized into Japanese.

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Mobile Content Business by Namco

Senior Managing Executive Officer President
Contents & Expansion Company, NAMCO Limited
Mr. Shigekazu Ishimura
The distribution of contents sold for a fee (games, call signal with melodies, and standby screens) is one of the major mobile content businesses performed by Namco. I am going to discuss the birth of the business, possibilities that exist in the mobile phone business, the fee structure on a per month and per downloaded file basis, sites such as Namco i-Land and Appli Carrot, the transition of subscribers of major sites, the transition of download counts of major contents, models of transition of subscribers' numbers, earnings models, transition of total subscribers, characteristics of mobile phone games, development for overseas markets, contents offered for car navigation systems and others.

Generally, the number of subscribers of contents charged per month increases rapidly at the beginning, but such an increase stops after a certain period, then the trend starts to fall. The daily increase of subscribers is determined by the marquee name of the content, and the rate of their withdrawal is almost constant. Considering earnings, promotions for more subscriptions is important, however, how to avoid subscribers' withdrawals is more important. Contents charged per downloaded file tend to sell longer than home-use game software. Mobile phone games should have a network version, and need to have highly condensed entertainment features. However, inexpensive initial development costs, phased development investments, no costs for inventory and distribution are characteristics of the business, and the current key issue is how to accommodate the latest mobile phone models.

In its mobile content business, Namco aims for the realization of "ubiquitous entertainment," which is enjoyed by players anywhere and anytime.

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Mobile Phone as a Complex Platform

General Manager, Strategies for the Next Generation Room, CYBIRD Co., Ltd.
Mr. Masaharu Terada
Where will mobile phones and content providers go? It greatly depends on the trends of technology, users' preference and the market. The point that attracts the greatest attention is how to link it up with "real" business by making a mobile phone an ID terminal. If a mobile phone can be used as a type of identification, certain transactions may be handled by our side, and not by mobile terminals. I also would like to emphasize that mobile phones start to act as a bridge between media and communication.

The mobile phone business expanded by offering engertainment contents, and this proves that data has now become an article for sale. This trend will lead to broadcasting on mobile phones. At the same time, according to the evolution of application platforms, applications themselves and transaction platforms will also become articles for sale as well as for browsing. On the other hand, terminal platforms will also become articles for sales.

As information terminals that are always carried with users, browsing and processing of various information using mobile phones are rapidly increasing. They will surely become the core of ubiquitous computing where controls of other types of information terminals and devices are very inexpensive. At the same time, service providers try to offer more convenient and more sophisticated services, and users expect mobile phones to become easier-to-use and more fun to use. As a result, functions and information handled by mobile phones have considerably increased, and how to make their use easier is becoming more and more important.

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Intermediate Report of Experiment for 3D Content Distribution

3D Consortium Services, Contents Section Sub-leader
Mr. Chikara Horikoshi
In order to support creators, the Service/Contents Section opened the "Creators' Lounge" in the 3D Consortium's website. We tried to make the lounge act as a liaison between creators, who belong to the Digital Content Association, and member companies of the 3D Consortium.

We started an experiment for 3D content distribution using SH505i mobile phones on March 8. The detailed contents distributed were, (1) Tetsujin 28 (produced by Crossmedia), (2) O-edo Fushigi Sanpo (produced by Stereo Club Tokyo), (3) CG character "FeiFei" (produced by e-frontier) and (4) 3D Kurukuru Zukan Hanahachi (produced by Meta Corporation Japan).

Around 4,700 people accessed the experimental site, and the cumulative download count was around 900. For the question, "Were images seen as stereoscopic images?" most of them replied "I immediately saw them in stereoscope." For the question, "What do you think about 3D images compared to traditional two dimensional images?" many of them who saw FeiFei replied, "They had a sense of realism." For all of the distributed contents, many respondents mentioned, "It was very real," or "It was fun."

In response to the question, "What would you like to see as 3D images?" many of them replied dramatic movies, picture books, and photo collections. People who saw FeiFei or Tetsujin 28 tended to have an interest in animation and comics. For the question, "How much are you going to pay to see 3D contents?" most of them replied "Less than 100 yen," but some responded, "I am going to pay 200 yen."

Most of respondents to this questionnaire were males in their thirties. There is no difference in gender in the number of users of mobile phone games, so the statistical reliability will be increased with more female participants in the experiment.

<< Summary >>

· The peak of access counts came immediately after the opening of the site on March 8, then the number gradually decreased. We need to advertise more about our experiment.

· Most of participants were males in their thirties. Access counts from specific content greatly differ between males and females. Information was insufficient to make an analysis in terms of mobile phone games.

· The massive majority replied they would pay less than 100 yen for using 3D content.

· Unexpectedly, many replied they would like to see movies and dramas as 3D images. We assume that many respondents mentioned they would like to see live action shots as 3D images , because half of the distributed contents were photos and the remainder were real images which were almost like live action shots. At this moment, SH505i only supports slide shows of still images, but if it supports animation in the future, we may see its new possibilities for amusement.

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