Telecommunications venture Heisei Den Den Co. will launch Monday a discount ADSL service with a maximum Internet access speed of 12 megabits per second, officials said Wednesday.

The new asymmetrical digital subscriber line service will be offered for annual fees of 15,000 yen. On a monthly basis, the service will cost subscribers 2,123 yen, including modem rental and other charges.

Though simple comparisons are impossible, the monthly charge will be the lowest among 12-megabit access services including the Yahoo! BB service run by the Softbank Corp. group, the officials said.

Subscribers to the existing slower ADSL service can download necessary software from Heisei Den Den’s Web site to raise the access speed to 12 megabits.

The new service will be initially available at 96 locations around Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp.’s telephone stations in prefectures from Miyagi in the north to Yamaguchi in the south. A nationwide service will follow before long, the officials said.

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