Rakuten Members: a New Business Model to Threaten 5G Incumbency

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Report Summary:

Rakuten’s 5G service launch in Japan will require a significant pricing response from the incumbents if it succeeds in its aggressive network coverage plans and in destabilizing historically low churn rates. Operators should pay attention to its impact on the local market; its membership model is one that could bring disruptive brands into other markets and its Rakuten Communications Platform promises more rapid scale for open, cloud-native networks.
Table of Contents

Rakuten’s 4G service has got off to a solid start
“Tada 5G”: 5G is free
Rakuten Membership will be central to early 5G consumer success
Rakuten will need to address low market churn and hit its aggressive coverage targets to succeed
A consumer-centric 5G launch with healthy enterprise ambitions
Introducing new business models; evolving from Subscribers to Members and offering network deployment and operation services internationally
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