"Live!Aurora" is beaming the sights of the aurora borealis from Alaska straight to mobile phones in Japan. Due to the time zone difference, Japanese consumers can enjoy the sites of the aurora between lunchtime and evening. As well as being able to watch streaming video of northern lights, the site also offers video on demand and still images for download. Offered as a subscription service costing 315 yen per month ($2.60).
McDonald's Japan and NTT DoCoMo announced today that they have agreed to jointly promote e-marketing based on DoCoMo Osaifu-Keitai e-wallet services. The undertaking will include the establishment of a joint venture company to plan and manage e-marketing promotions to McDonald's newly planned membership club, and the introduction of DoCoMo's iD platform for mobile-phone credit cards and ToruCa information-capture service at McDonald's stores.
Celebrating the fast approaching arrival of spring in Japan we have noticed a significant increase in cellphone fashion action lately.. even Wired magazine is getting into the game! Samantha Thavasa has barbie-doll pink N903i designer handset due out in March and Omote Sando Hills held a glitzy fashion show over the weekend to feature Sony Ericcson's new 703i-series model (yes that would be the smell-phone) complete with a custom TinkerBell design by Disney. JiJi Press video after the jump.
KDDI has announced the number of users for their EZ news flash service exceeded one million people
on Saturday, February 17 this year. EZ news flash launched on Thursday, September 21, 2006 as an
information delivery service, weather news for example with BCMCS to deliver instant and updating multicast information to the standby screen of subscribers mobile phone. The service charges a small information fee while data charge is free.
Several sources are reporting that Intel Capital and Yoshimoto Kogyo have bought a small stake in Faith Inc.. Last week Faith's U.S. arm Moderati was sold to Bellrock Media, as pointed out in the most recent Mobile Music Watch newsletter; "Following its board meeting last Friday, Faith Inc. announced that co-founder and COO Makoto Nakanishi will resign from the company and acquire 100% of its struggling US subsidiary Faith Communications.". According to their statement, the US subsidiary is losing money and plagued with problems, including a postponed trial launch of its Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) service and heavy capital requirements.
We caught a feature article on a domestic mobile news site that ranked Japan's most popular selling models for last year. For KDDI/au the W41CA by Casio was put on the market in February and maintained top place for almost 33 weeks. The continued success of that model was attributed to the feature set which includes; EZ FeliCa (mobile wallet), FM radio tuner, PC Site Viewer (Opera browser) and 2.6-inch wide screen display. The second half sales were dominated by the W43S "Walkman Phone" by Sony Ericsson. See the full ranking list after the jump.
eMobile announced their debut package offering - complete with terminals, data cards and flat-rate HSDPA price plan - today at a Tokyo press conference with company representatives joined by notable industry partners including Paul Jacobs, CEO of Qualcomm, Darren Huston, CEO of Microsoft Japan, and Masafumi Matsumoto, representative director from Sharp. The upstart carrier's founder, chairman and CEO, Sachio Semmoto (who was co-founder of DDI, which became KDDI), called their newly introduced Sharp EM-One smartphone, "the next-generation mobile broadband device" - which was "designed to deliver always-on broadband at a reasonable monthly flat-rate price."
The new Sharp terminal is bound to be popular with the same crowd
japan.internet.com recently reported on a survey conducted by JR Tokai Express Research on the subject of mobile phones and spam. Over three days at the start of February 330 peope from their monitor group successfully completed a private internet-based questionnaire. The sample was 51.8% feamle, with 26.7% in their twenties, 40.6% in their thirties, 25.2% in their forties, 5.5% in their fifties, and 2.1% in their sixties. I’ve been spam-free on my phone, perhaps because I only sign up with reputable firms. However, my wife has used YNot electronic greeting cards just recently, and has been plagued with a flood of spam from Rakuten partners. Full details with graphs Here.
japan.internet.com recently reported on a survey conducted at the start of the month by Cross Marketing Inc regarding children and mobile phones. 300 members of their monitor panel who had children successfully completed a private internet-based questionnaire. The sample was split 50:50 male and female, and the ages of their children (some of the respondents had more than one) were 11.0% under three years old, 41.7% older than three but not yet entered elementary school, 30.0% in the first two years of elementary school (aged six or seven), 19.7% in the third or fourth year of elementary school, 28.0% in the fifth and sixth year of elementary school, 31.0% in middle school, and 20.7% in high school or older. Full details with graphs Here.
The 12th Annual GSM Association Global Mobile Awards were announced last night in Barcelona at the annual industry event which showcases the best of the mobile world. The stars of the night were the 2007 Global Mobile Awards winners, whose achievements provide an insight into the services, devices and innovation that are taking the mobile industry forward. Sony Ericsson's K800 CyberShot handset won best 3G handset and Tokyo based I-play's "The Fast and the Furious" took Best Made for Mobile Game. See the full category list and winners after the jump.
>Mobikyo K.K. publishes Wireless Watch Japan, organizes MobileMonday Tokyo networking events and operates Mobile Intelligence study tours providing related custom research and advisory services. Mobikyo's founding directors are deeply connected with, respected by, and committed to, Japan's wireless and IT business community. Thousands of managers, planners, engineers and strategists depend on Mobikyo to learn about Japan's unique business models, technologies, contents, services, applications and hardware from the most innovative test-bed market for next-generation mobile industry. "Mobikyo" was chosen for the unique blending of Mobile and Tokyo. However, depending on the kanji character used for kyo, it could also mean association, capital, religion or today. With fantastic support from our clients, partners and affiliates in Japan and overseas, we have become the trusted source of independent market intelligence & business networking connections based in Tokyo.
MobileMonday Tokyo is a leading networking organization supporting Tokyo's mobile industry. We launched in September 2004, with over 70 events to-date, hosting an average 100-200 industry delegates. MobileMonday is an open platform for mobile industry visionaries, developers and industry insiders fostering cooperation and business development through live networking events to share ideas, best practices and trends from global markets. Chapters are active in over 100 cities worldwide and new locations continue to launch monthly. Founded in Helsinki, Finland, in 2000, MobileMonday is organized by a global team of 300+ volunteers and it has become the world's largest mobile community network. Details via MoMo Tokyo website
Mobile Intelligence offers related custom research and consulting designed specifically for industry executives working in sales, marketing, product development, strategy, venture capital and the media. From private workshops and conference presentations to trend spotting innovation and detailed analysis, our services are based on the direct experience and lessons learned in the Japanese mobile market. We also run a unique in-Japan guided tour service providing market introductions, personal connections and actionable lessons for clients overseas. Delegates take part in seminar and attend inside sessions, at individual companies, in technology showrooms, and -- most importantly -- on the fabled streets of Tokyo. Alumni return home with a competitive edge, integrated awareness and personal contacts moving them to the forefront of new business development. Full details via Mobile Intelligence website