However, until now public broadcaster NHK has not been permitted to run simultaneous online streaming of its channels.
That’s about to change following proposals put to cabinet this week by communications minister Masatoshi Ishida, who wants to make it possible to have the channels available on smartphones.
Up to now, NHK has been restricted to the coverage of breaking news and live sports, amid fears an expansion could impact on Japan’s private broadcasters.
Under Ishida’s proposals, NHK will be required to reveal the costs of its streaming service, as the government puts a greater emphasis on transparency.
It’s anticipated the bill will receive assent ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.