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Nationwide 5G mobile coverage coming to Japan in 2023

Three top carriers to invest over $45bn in next-generation wireless

A 5G connection could improve self-driving technology by allowing faster communication between cars.

TOKYO -- Japan's three leading mobile service providers will begin offering 5G wireless communication to customers in 2020, with at least one planning to go nationwide in 2023, fueling a potential boon for self-driving technology and the "internet of things."

NTT Docomo, KDDI and SoftBank Group are expected to invest a combined 5 trillion yen ($45.7 billion) to roll out the fifth-generation wireless communications services around the country. They first will commercialize 5G connection in parts of Tokyo and other limited areas in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

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