It turns out the leak we blogged last month is true: Japan’s biggest mobile carrier NTT Docomo today officially introduced the Fujitsu LOOX F-07C as part of its summer line-up, and the device actually does dual-boot to Symbian and Windows 7 OS (not Windows Phone). Hardware-wise, the LOOX is pretty interesting, too. → Read More
Japan’s biggest mobile carrier NTT Docomo today announced it will develop with Twitter a set of new mobile services for its domestic customer base of 58 million. Under the deal, Docomo plans to integrate a “touch and follow” app into NFC-equipped feature phones, allowing two users to start following each other just by placing their handsets together.
One of the largest chemical companies in Asia, Mitsubishi Chemical Corp. in Japan, has formed a partnership with San Diego, Calif.-based Genomatica, a sustainable chemicals startup, the companies revealed today.
Genomatica converts sugar from corn wet mills, sugar cane and sugar beet — among other sources — into butanediol (BDO), a chemical used to make everything from the plastics in… → Read More
But in Asia– and much of the rest of the developing world– the anticipated mobile giant is Android. Android phones are just starting to hit Japan and China, and a flood of cheap new models are expected to come on the market within the next… → Read More
When disasters of scale happen, like the massive 9.0-magnitude earthquake that struck Japan and sent tsunamis rippling across the globe last month, one of our first reactions is to immediately try to establish contact with those we care about who might have been affected. By phone or by email, by whatever means possible, we scramble to get in touch.
Of course, natural disasters often wreak havoc… → Read More
The Nintendo 3DS isn’t selling quite as quickly as Nintendo may have wanted. Media Create, which is sorta like a Japanese NPD, says that Nintendo has sold 836,000 units since its release in late February. The New Normal would have liked to see at least 1 million units sold, particularly since Nintendo shipped 1.5 million units out of worldwide total of 4 million to Japan. What gives? → Read More
Revolution in mobile-crazy Japan: Market research firm GFK Japan is reporting [JP, PDF] that more smartphones than feature phones have been sold in the country between March 28 and April 3. To be more concrete, 50.1% of all devices sold in Japan in that week were iOS, Android, Windows or BlackBerry phones (see chart). → Read More
Japan’s telecommunications juggernaut SoftBank, the third largest mobile carrier of the country, had to register quite a lot of damage after the big earthquake that hit Japan on March 11. 3,800 of SoftBank’s base stations were knocked out, meaning no customer in the affected areas could make or receive calls via cell phones (the situation was similar with other carriers).
But it turned out that… → Read More
A few days after the Japan disaster struck, you could find numerous Japanese gaming companies pledging millions of dollars toward disaster relief. That’s still the case, but I also wanted to mention what Sega of America was doing to help. The company has put a number of items up for auction on eBay, and 100 percent of the proceeds will, naturally, go to disaster relief. → Read More
It certainly looks that way. The country has been having a national discussion ever since the Japan nuclear crisis, and the consensus seems to be that nuclear isn’t worth the risk. Instead, the country will embrace alternative forms of energy, including renewable sources. → Read More
This photo is a poem. It’s a sad poem, but a poem nonetheless. You’re looking at a proud Otaku’s collection of stuff as seen after the series of earthquakes that have hit Japan in recent days. What can you spy with your eye? → Read More
Companies across the tech world are doing their best to help Japan recover following the earthquake and subsequent tsunami. That’s in addition to the general outpouring of support shown to Japan by other, “non-tech” people and organizations. With that in mind, I’ve taken a few moments to round-up some of the efforts I’ve spotted online that aim to make a little bit easier for the people of… → Read More
Japan’s game publishers (and other tech companies) will donate hundreds of million of yen to support the country’s continued efforts following last Friday’s earthquake and subsequent tsunami. Of the bigger companies, Nintendo has said it will donate 300 million yen ($3.66 million) to relief efforts, Sega (technically Sega Sammy) will donate 200 million yen ($2.44 million), and Sony will donate 300… → Read More
A massive earthquake that struck off Japan’s northeastern coast on Friday— taking 1,200 lives, with thousands still unaccounted for and ten thousand feared dead by police — also damaged multiple nuclear power plants there.
Researchers at Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology are developing a big cloth that’s embedded with capacitive touch sensors. To what end, you ask? The idea is to one day create wearable clothing—is “wearable clothing” redundant?—that “sense[s] what’s happening around the wearer.” → Read More
Disney exited the cell phone business in the US back in 2007, but the MVNO Disney operates in Japan seems to be doing well: last month, Disney Mobile Japan started offering a special Android phone, which is currently being advertised on national TV. And yesterday, Disney Mobile even opened [JP, PDF] a physical store in central Tokyo. → Read More
t would appear that the Nintendo 3DS is a hit. Nintendo has shipped some 400,000 units since its launch last Saturday in Japan, with reports of the system being sold out throughout the country. (The system will be released in North America on March 27.) That’s the good news for Nintendo. The bad news is that it’s already been hacked. Oh dear. → Read More
On Monday, we’ve just shown you some leaked pictures, but we can now confirm the world’s thinnest smartphone, NEC Casio Mobile’s MEDIAS N-04C, is real. And provider NTT Docomo, Japan’s biggest mobile carrier, doesn’t want to lose time in bringing it to market: it will hit stores over here as early as March 15. → Read More
Japan has always been the land of mobile. As such, it’s no big surprise that the country’s biggest social network, Mixi (JP, 23 million members), sees 25 of its 29 billion monthly page views coming from cell phones. And according to Mixi, it’s now the first social network that lets users share information with friends through NFC technology on Android handsets. → Read More
Japan’s three big mobile carriers are offering more than 100 handsets per year, and some of them are quite unique. The latest limited edition is the Sharp SH-09C [JP], a handset developed in cooperation with French luxury crystal glass maker Baccarat and distributed by mobile carrier NTT Docomo. → Read More
I went through an anime phase in college, discovering all the cool stuff from the 80s and 90s that I’d missed, and among the few I remember fondly is Neon Genesis Evangelion. Its legacy continues in new re-imaginings, toy lines, and now, hotel rooms. Are you one of these guys who can’t get enough of the passive, blue-haired Rei? Well now you can sleep in an entry plug and be woken by her… → Read More
Things are slowly changing in Japan, land of the super-advanced feature phones (which have always been smartphones in disguise as far as features are concerned). Market research firm Gfk Japan [JP] is reporting that no less than seven of the top 10 handsets sold in the country between January 10 and 16 were smartphones. → Read More
Truth be told, I never heard of FRANCK MULLER before, but the (apparently quite famous) watch brand from Switzerland has designed a special case for the iPhone 4 that can now be pre-ordered in Japan. And as FRANCK MULLER is a luxury brand, each case will set you back a cool $1,270 [JP]. → Read More
It can’t get bigger than this in Asia’s mobile industry, and in fact, it’s a business alliance with the potential to shake things up on a global level. Today, the world’s biggest mobile carrier China Mobile, Japan’s No. 1 player NTT Docomo and Korea’s leading telco KT have announced the establishment of a “broad-based business tie-up”. → Read More
Disney may have pulled the plug on their cell phone business in the US in 2007, but in Japan (where the company’s characters have a huge fan base), its MVNO is apparently doing pretty well. And now it comes to light [JP] that next month, Disney enthusiasts living in that country will be able to lay their hands on a special Android phone. → Read More
Nintendo has released the full list of 3DS launch titles—for Japan, that is. (Nintendo hosts a press conference next week in New York that, one would guess, will cover the North American 3DS launch details. We’ll be there, knock on wood.) Ten games will be available at launch on February 26: Konami’s Winning Eleven Soccer (known as Pro Evolution Soccer outside Japan); Namco Bandai’s Ridge… → Read More
Apple has a history of trouble with the government in Japan, and over the the last days, more bad news reached the company (which is highly successful in Japan). This time it’s not about iPods causing fire but about the iPhone. The Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications criticized Apple Japan and its exclusive provider in the country, SoftBank Mobile, for offering insufficient… → Read More
As we reported multiple times over the past months, the iPhone is a hit in Japan. When compared to other Japanese phones, however, it lacks a few key features such as digital TV tuners or an e-wallet function. Provider SoftBank introduced a hardware solution for the former problem in 2008, and now there’s one for the latter, too. → Read More