Japan’s Toshiba and Mitsubishi Electric have said they will work together to develop 3G mobile handsets, combining their R&D divisions and their chip divisions. They are aiming to speed development and cut costs.
The companies hope to launch their first jointly developed handset commercially at the beginning of 2004, by which time they expect 3G will have started to take off globally.
Toshiba and Mitsubishi also hope the new deal will allow them to make a major push into markets outside Asia, where their share is currently low. This may be optimistic: they will face fierce competition both from major western players such as Nokia and Motorola, and from east/west alliances such as Sony Ericsson.