Last week’s Wireless Japan Expo was a bit of an anticipointment. With the exception of a few prototype handsets from NEC, WWJ had already reported on much of the technology on display. DoCoMo and Panasonic highlighted the fun of their customizable 901i handsets. One area included display-only custom covers by Japanese artists and designers. MoBaHo!, that joint venture of 88 Japanese and Korean companies beaming 40 channels of video, audio and data programming to handheld receivers, cell phones and car-mounted tuners from their satellite mostly recycled displays from last autumn’s show. Though not really new, Fuji Film’s pocket-sized infrared printer PiVi drew in expo goers with photos next to a mock-up of the Japan National Soccer Team. KDDI showcased their newly announced tie-up with Felica (and Suica) via demonstrations of au 3G phones zipping through JR ticket gates and playing games on Sega arcade machines equipped with Felica readers.
Our guest reporter, freshman media major Christy Nakada on loan from her university in California demonstrates the Felica/au connection at the KDDI booth and brings the PiVi into focus from Fuji in this 4-minute peek-a-boo video from the event.
Exhibitors and manufacturers seem to be saving their more exciting developments -– and convention display budgets — for cooler weather and the huge CEATEC consumer electronics and Tokyo Game Show events coming this fall.
– Gail Nakada