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NTT around the World

NTT COMWARE America Branch

Toshihide Asano
Branch Manager,
California Office,
NTT COMWARE America Branch


NTT COMWARE Corporation America Branch is focusing on providing new business value by monitoring emerging trends of venture-capital companies and the telecommunications industry in Silicon Valley and disseminating this information to its customers as well as to the NTT Group. This article introduces our business and activities.

California Office, NTT COMWARE America Branch
1741 Technology Drive, Suite 320, San Jose CA 950110, USA

1. Introduction

NTT COMWARE Corporation America Branch was established in Silicon Valley, California, USA, in April 1997 as a base for high-tech market research. It began full-scale activities in September 1997. In June 2007, it relocated to San Jose, where NTT Group companies have offices on the same floor of the building. Our main activities can be summarized as follows.

(1) Market research about Silicon Valley ventures.

(2) Surveys of and reports on the trends of the telecommunications industry and related business fields in North America and Europe.

(3) Business planning based on the above findings.

We send to Japan the latest exciting American news, which we gather and disseminate not only by conducting in-house surveys but also by working with and exchanging information with other NTT Group companies based in Silicon Valley. The number of employees is currently six (Photo 1).

Photo 1. Staff members of NTT COMWARE America Branch.

2. High-tech mecca

Several remarkable high-tech companies like Google, Apple, Intel, HP, and Facebook and many startup companies aspiring to become the next Google work hard and work with each other in Silicon Valley. In the midst of such innovation, we are trying to see what is going on in technologies and services right now. Below, I mention a couple of our survey themes.

2.1 Home ICT

Many actions that are usually performed by people, such as turning lights on and off and locking and unlocking doors, can now be performed at home by remote control from a personal computer (PC). This is known as Home ICT (information and communications technology). There are now services for remotely controlling everything in the home, such as home appliances and electric vehicle charging stations, from mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet PCs. Telecommunications carriers like Verizon are partnering with startup companies in Silicon Valley and this year they are launching new services—home monitoring and control—that will be game changers for home communication services.

2.2 Convergence of Internet and telephone

We see cutting edge services arising from the convergence of the Internet and telephone appearing one after another in Silicon Valley. For example, convenient new services let you have fun browsing the web using a phone without the need for a PC, you can leave voice mail about matters that you do not want to discuss directly, and you can use a voice recorder to create important reminders and receive email notifications when the time comes (Fig. 1).

Fig. 1. Convergence of the Internet and telephone.

2.3 Big data analysis

The diversity represented by the proliferation of smartphones and tablets and the changes in Internet usage style due to the expansion of social media are making enterprises try to get a competitive edge or improve services to make them more user-friendly by utilizing publicly available data on the Internet. For example, enterprises can now promote customer retentions effectively by analyzing the behavior of each user and manage the reputation of a company or service by analyzing comments made in social media. In addition to these individual studies, we are conducting joint activities aimed at achieving synergy within the NTT Group by sharing market research findings and conducting joint surveys with other NTT Group companies in Silicon Valley. We also participate in local events to create a diversified network for the Japanese community and hold private discussion seminars in Japan with Japanese organizations based on the investigations that we have conducted in the USA (Photo 2).

Photo 2. Sharing information for group synergy.

3. Future prospects

ICT is continuously evolving. In recent years, mobile device diversity and social network services have made remarkable progress. Silicon Valley continues to be the leading hub for technology innovation. We recognize that identifying emerging trends in technologies and businesses and informing our customers about them are essential to our commercial success these days. We at NTT COMWARE America Branch strive to be a partner for each of our customers to support their future business.

If you have any business needs for market research about the telecommunications industry or emerging business trends, please feel free to contact us at any time.

NTT COMWARE—short column

Popular professional teams

To many people, the words Silicon Valley suggest world-famous ICT companies, but in fact Silicon Valley has another facet: sports are very popular here.

In professional sports, Silicon Valley is home to the famous San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League, which are based in San Francisco and named after the gold seekers called forty-niners in the California gold rush that begin in 1848. Also based in San Francisco are the San Francisco Giants, the Major League Baseball (MLB) champions. And based in Oakland, on the other side of San Francisco Bay, are Oakland Athletics, another MLB team, who have the famous Japanese player Hideki Matsui, known as Godzilla Matsui.

Furthermore, San Jose city, where our U.S. office is located, has the San Jose Sharks, a National Hockey League (ice hockey) team. Though ice hockey is not particularly popular in Japan, the Sharks are much loved by local fans and they have won the Pacific Division championship in recent years.

MLB team Oakland Athletics.

Weekend recreation

People in Silicon Valley love doing sports as well as watching sports because of the good weather and beautiful nature. Cycling on road bikes is one of the most popular sports around here. Cyclists can travel around safely and comfortably because most roads around Silicon Valley have bike lanes, which are marked lanes designated for only cyclists. We can see many people wearing cycling jerseys enjoying cycling on weekends, especially in mountainous areas.

Within an hour’s drive or so, there are many State Parks and National Parks, where many people like to go jogging, cycling, or climbing.

You might think that it is a slightly surprising that sports are so popular here in Silicon Valley, where many people are working for ICT-related companies, but physical activity on weekends is good and refreshing for people working at office desks on weekdays.

We are trying to follow the Silicon Valley way of having fun on weekends by doing sports to get refreshed and energized.

Rocky park near Silicon Valley.

Many roads in Silicon Valley have bike lanes.