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Netflix partners with SoftBank for Japan launch

Netflix has partnered with Japanese telecoms and internet giant SoftBank to launch its video-streaming service in Japan.

SoftBank customers will be able to sign up for Netflix through SoftBank's shops, website and call centers, as well as through major electronics retailers, Netflix said on Monday.

Netflix also announced a tiered pricing structure starting at 650 yen ($5.41) per month for the basic plan, going up to 1,450 yen for the premium account, which includes ultra-high definition streaming.

SoftBank will begin pre-installing the Netflix app on its smartphones for sale after October 2015.

Customers of Softbank, one of Japan's largest mobile carriers, will be able to sign up for Netflix without having to fill out any payment information. The Netflix fee will be added to users' monthly bill that they receive from SoftBank.

The launch in Japan marks Netflix's first foray into Asia. The company has been on an aggressive expansion drive outside of the U.S. and is set to launch in Spain, Italy and Portugal this year and China in 2016. It has said it wants to be in 200 countries by the end of 2016.

In Japan, Netflix will be competing against streaming service Hulu, which boasts over 1 million users in the country.