NTT DoCoMo Inc, Japan’s largest mobile carrier, posted 66,800 losses in net users in September even after picking up Apple Inc’s new iPhone.

DoCoMo’s share of mobile users slumped to 46% in September despite attempts to regain a market that has been dominated by SoftBank Corp and KDDI Corp.

It had introduced the new iPhones to its lineup last month—previously offered by SoftBank and KDDI—after focusing on handsets from Sony Corp and Samsung Electronics.

The two carriers gained 270,700 users for SoftBank and 232,700 for KDDI in September. DoCoMo had a total of 61.8 million subscribers last month, followed by KDDI with 39 million and SoftBank with 34 million, according to Bloomberg.

DoCoMo attributed the subscriber loss to customers who delayed purchases until after Apple’s new mobiles went on sale September 20 and insufficient stock of those handsets, company spokesman Atsuko Suzuki said.

“DoCoMo must offer more incentives for existing users to remain with the carrier,” said Eiji Mori, an analyst at BCN Inc in Tokyo.

SoftBank accounted for 39.5% of Japanese sales of Apple’s two new models, while DoCoMo took a 31.9% market share and KDDI controlled 28.6%, according to estimates from BCN.

By: Maesie Bertumen

Image: Sebra /