Japan Considers Smart Appliance User Fees
Jul 20, 2004
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The Japanese government is considering charging users of home information appliances and high-bandwidth wireless local area networks (LANs) for spectrum user fees.

The Ministry of Public Management, Home Affairs, Posts and Telecommunications said it is considering a revision bill of the Radio Law aimed to introduce the new charges.

The users of home information appliances and wireless LANs are currently exempt from paying spectrum user fees, but the ministry plans to impose the fees because such appliances use almost the same spectrum as mobile phones whose users are required to pay the fees. Spectrum user fees have been charged on licensed broadcasting and radio stations as well as cellular phone companies.

However, manufacturers impose the fees as the introduction is likely to affect sales as the ministry says it plans to collect the fees the appliances are purchased.

The ministry will soon compile a report on the proposal to charge the fees on information appliances and wireless LAN users. The introduction of the fees will formally be decided in September 2004 after inviting public opinion. (Xinhuanet)

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