There is one sentence, the last one in the answer to the first question that I am just not fully getting because it reads to me that the other carriers (i.e., softbank) have already agreed to follow the unlock guidelines, and if they didn't, neither would have Docomo. However, I am not aware that Softbank has agreed to anything of the sort, though it was mentioned that meetings have already started for working out a strategy for handling maintenance to branded phones that are off network...
しかし、指針が示されず、他３社（ＫＤＤＩ、ソフトバンクモバイル、イー・モバイル）が「解除しない」としていれば、ドコモも実施しなかったかもしれません。If it said 実施しないかもしれません, it would make more sense (to me at least). It would also be a bit disturbing since it would imply that Docomo would potentially back out.
Anyways, as always, this is not a translation, per se, but rather me writing in English what the Japanese means to me. Standard disclaimers apply.
The interview did not provide much in the way of new information, although the interviewer did mention that many people believe Docomo's desire for unlocking is really just a desire for the iPhone. The Docomo execs also took some swipes at Softbank's locking of the iPhone/iPad. Perhaps most interesting is, in the final question, Furukawa mentions that future competition will come down to service plans, not only their price but how easy a particular plan is to understand.
Docomo is notorious, as all J-carriers are, for making plans ridiculously complicated. Imagine a Japan where you don't need a calculator to figure out just how many minutes you talked on the phone. (I'll believe it when I see it.)
Yomiuri: Tell us how SIM unlocking is going to work.
Furukawa: Docomo will begin selling unlocked handsets with the summer models to be announced in May, 2011. The MIC has indicated that from April, 2011, capable handsets should be unlocked. Because these guidelines are based on customer desire, there is no reason not to comply. However, if the other companies did not comply, maybe docomo would not have either.
Y: What will change with unlocking?
F: First of all, the possibility of using your domestic handset abroad will increase. With an unlocked handset, a comparatively inexpensive service contract with a local carrier is possible. Of course, the functionality of the handset will be limited. Domestically, each carrier's coverage area is different, so having a signal is most important.
Y: It has been said that the reason for for you to unlock SIMs is to bring Softbank's popular iPhone to Docomo.
F: I've heard that too, but the first priority is customer convenience and choice. The reason is to follow the MIC's clearly written guidelines. While the iPhone is most certainly selling extremely well now, I don't know if it still will be two to three years later. If we were to release a killer handset that everyone wanted, we would under no circumstances sell it locked to our network.
Investigating a convenient process based on foreign case studies
Y: What would be the best process for customers?
Takahashi: Currently, we are formulating a detailed plan while studying overseas examples. I believe the model will be one in which the customer purchases a handset from a Docomo shop, then Docomo unlocks the handset and returns it to the customer.
F: When unlocking a handset, various restrictions will be encountered. After changing carriers, the only usable functions will be voice and SMS. Proprietary services, such as Docomo's i-mode, will not function on another carrier's network. Therefore, rather than providing unlock codes over the internet, we would prefer for customers to come in person to one our our shops so we may properly explain the restrictions.
Cooperative preparations for after service are indispensable
Y: How will handset service be accomplished
T: If a customer takes an unlocked Docomo phone to another carrier, it would be extremely unkind of us to just say that customer is on their own with regards to service. So, all carriers must work out a means for servicing handsets.
F: In July, all carriers participated in our first meeting to exchange ideas. We are putting together a system with the cooperation of each carrier.
Promoting competition based on service fees
Y: With the addition of new features, won't handset prices increase?
F: While there will most likely be a service charge for unlocking, I don't expect that there will be a large increase in handset price. From now, the criteria upon which a customer chooses a carrier will not be based solely upon coverage area or handset quality, but is also likely to include the price of service plans. Indeed, a price war could result.
Y: Tell us how Docomo will position itself in the future.
F: After phones are unlocked, we expect an increase in the number of people changing carriers because customers will cease being tied to a single carrier and enjoy the use of the handset of their choice on the carrier of their choice. I think customers will support an approach that meets their demands and increases their satisfaction. I think success will come down to the fundamentals of coverage and product quality, as well as the ability to provide reasonably priced service plans that are straightforward and easy to understand.