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5G networks

SoftBank to move up Japan 5G network plans by 2 years

Carrier looks to reach 60% coverage by early 2023

A SoftBank mobile store in Ginza: The carrier plans to launch commercial 5G wireless service this March. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO -- Japanese telecommunications carrier SoftBank Corp. looks to finish the initial stage of building its fifth-generation wireless network two years ahead of schedule, hoping to get a leg up on rivals, Nikkei has learned.

The carrier, part of billionaire Masayoshi Son's SoftBank Group, had planned to install 11,210 base stations across Japan, covering more than 60% of the country, by the end of the fiscal year through March 2025.

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