• Bartz Takes the Hint, Stays away from Alibaba's Board…for Now

    Carol Bartz has been the fashionable Silicon Valley punching bag for much of 2010, and that’s no doubt escalating in private conversations in Sunnyvale today as hundreds of Yahoo employees are told they no longer have a job– just in time for Christmas! But give her credit for one savvy move: Not naming herself to Alibaba’s board as she signaled she would earlier in the year. Read More

  • Japan's SoftBank Offers Free 16GB iPad With 2-Year Contract

    A free iPad, how does that sound to you? You can get one, but you need to live in Japan and sign a two-year contract with SoftBank, the exclusive iPad provider in this country. The telecom behemoth announced a new pricing plan [JP] under which they fully subsidize a 16GB iPad (the Wi-Fi+3G model). Read More

  • Vader Waves Hand. "There Is No iPhone." But There Is — In A Big Way In Japan.

    Vader Waves Hand. "There Is No iPhone." But There Is — In A Big Way In Japan.

    Remember back in 2008 when there was a lot of talk about how the iPhone would flop in Japan? 91 percent of Japanese would not be buying the device, said one survey. By 2009, that talk inevitably turned to how it had already flopped. With some even writing about how the Japanese people “hate” the device. Then something funny happened. That kind of talk abruptly stopped. And for… Read More

  • SoftBank's Full Winter/Spring Cell Phone Line-Up

    <img src="; / Japan's No. 3 mobile carrier, SoftBank Mobile, has unveiled its cell phone line-up for this winter and spring yesterday. We already blogged in-depth about the two most interesting models, Sharp’s naked-eye 3D Android phone, but here’s the full line-up (not including simple… Read More

  • Galapagos 003SH/005SH: Sharp Shows 3D-Enabled Smartphones

    In September, we blogged on CrunchGear about Sharp’s entry into the Android tablet sector (the company is currently readying a 5.5-inch and a 10.8-inch version). Strangely dubbed “Galapagos”, the tablets, which will be available in Japan starting next month, will soon be joined by two smartphones carrying the same name. Read More

  • Video: Japan Gets Gundam "Robot" Phone

    After teasing it in May, Japan’s No. 3 mobile carrier SoftBank Mobile (25 million subscribers) now added a Gundam-themed cell phone to its line-up. Gundam is one of the most famous anime series out there, and the new handset is geared towards fans of that series (and cell phone otaku in general). Read More

  • Confirmed: Zynga Raises $150 Million More From Softbank – Asian Invasion Imminent

    News broke yesterday evening that social gaming giant Zynga has raised $150 million from Japanese firm Softbank Capital, bringing the company’s total funding up to a whopping $366 million. We’ve confirmed the funding from sources close to Zynga. The investment from Asia will likely pave the way for Zynga’s expansion into the Japanese market. Zynga already has interests in… Read More

  • Photo gallery: Japan's SoftBank shows 13 new, Twitter-powered cell phones

    We’ve shown you the summer cell phone lineup from KDDI (Japan’s No. 2 carrier) yesterday. Today, Japan’s third largest carrier, SoftBank Mobile, showed its own summer lineup during a special press conference, and all of their 13 new models have one thing in common: they all come with Twitter pre-installed. The buyers of these cell phones will be able to access Twitter either… Read More

  • Ustream Asia Debuts, New iPhone Apps For Japan

    Just four months after a major investment from Japan’s SoftBank, Ustream has officially launched its Asian arm. The live broadcasting site unveiled Ustream Asia this Monday, a joint venture with TV Bank Corporation (a unit of SoftBank). Ustream is also rolling out two new Japanese apps for the iPhone, a viewer and a broadcaster, specifically made for the market. The roots of Ustream… Read More

  • New market study shows iPhone continues to be big in Japan

    A lot has been written on how the iPhone performs in Japan, the world’s most advanced mobile nation, but the general consensus in this country now is that it sells very well (even though both Apple and provider SoftBank Mobile refuse to break down Japan-specific sales numbers). It’s rumored that the number of iPhones sold in Japan has passed 3 million. There are reasons for… Read More

  • Ustream's Massive Round: $20 Million Now, $55 Million More Later. And Maybe More.

    Streaming video site Ustream has just pulled in a massive new round of funding: $75 million. This second round was led by SoftBank, a Japanese telecom giant. Previously, the site had raised just below $13 million in funding, which came from its Series A in 2008 and its angel round in late 2007. Update: While Ustream noted the $75 million number, SoftBank has clarified that they’re… Read More

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