Casio phones coming soon to pockets near you

Japanese maker shifting production to W-CDMA handsets

Softbank phones

It's a fair bet that you have something made by Casio – whether a watch or a digital camera – at home, but if the company's plans bear fruit they could soon be joined by a mobile phone too.

Working in tandem with Japan's Softbank Mobile – the iPhone carrier there – Casio is developing its first W-CDMA mobiles that will open the market to global sales beyond the limited range it has now.

Spreading the word

Currently, Casio supplies only CDMA phones within Japan, the US and Korea, but the W-CDMA variety has far greater potential for spreading the Casio brand worldwide.

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If it succeeds, Casio will likely lead the way as other Japanese phone makers try to escape their stagnating domestic market, which has already reached saturation point.

The first models to hit Softbank will probably be adaptations of existing Casio phones that have been popular for their rugged build and waterproofing.