Japan is a tough market to crack for many non-Japanese cell phone makers, and even the world’s leading cell phone maker, Nokia, had to give up its Japan operations after having failed to gain a foothold in this country (in November last year). But they’re trying again, this time with their luxury brand Vertu.
Being a Japanese VERTU CLUB subscriber includes a number of perks. Users can call up a concierge who takes care of things like restaurant or hotel reservations 24 hours a day, for example (in either English or Japanese). Another service, dubbed Fortress, makes it possible to store data like phone numbers or addresses on servers operated in an underground bunker in the UK.
The price for this nonsense: $560 monthly, but you can make 20 hours of domestic calls for free. I can’t see Nokia going anywhere with this, especially not in this economy, but I could be wrong.