Mobile Users
Mobile Users

Free Wireless on the Bullet Bus

People on the move between Tokyo and Osaka can now hop a luxury bus service which conveniently includes speedy wireless access. These red-eye express coaches offer riders 802.11b/g connectivity via IIJ and DoCoMo networks with power access and Business Class seats for about $100usd, a notable savings compared to taking the Shinkansen. While commuter buses are usually designed to carry up to 40 passengers, these new Eco-Friendly hybrid gas and electric powered chariots are configured with only 16 large comfortable reclining vibro-seats. Talk about flying first class on the ground!

New Mobile Banking Service by DoCoMo

DoCoMo has announced they will launch a new mobile banking service on 21 July allowing users to transfer up to approx. $200 per transaction and $2,000 per month to any other DoCoMo customer. The mobile remittance does not require a new bank account and the total fee per transaction is set at $1.65 The funds can be sent to recipients personal bank account or credited to their DoCoMo monthly phone bill. Apparently, this platform will not be made available to corporate subscribers.

Japan Social Networking Survey

Point On Research conducted this survey, in Japanese, on Japan SNS in early June, with interesting results. The questionnaire targeted demographics, representing 50-50 sample of male to female and equal 25% ratio on the age split between teens, twenties thirties and forties, for feedback on platforms and access with Mixi the clear leader at 72% and mobile preferred to PC by more than 4 to 1 margin. Another note of interest shows that over 65% of the group indicate they are daily users!

Japanese Kids Mobile Usage Survey

Japanese Kids Mobile Usage SurveyThe Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology released the results of their “investigation about use of a child’s cellular phone” survey which was conducted late last year. With replies coming from a total of 10,448 people, ranging in age from elementary school through high school, it’s a wide ranging report with a significant amount of user data, all in Japanese. It’s a real eye-opener on mobile youth usage behavior so we cranked out a quick machine translation, to cover the key points, after the jump.

Majority of 911 Calls Via Mobile

According to this article on the Mainichi Shimbun, National Police Agency figures released for 2008 show that over 63 percent of calls for emergency services in Japan come from mobile phones. Results showed that a total of 5,165,795 calls were made from mobile phones, up 1.5 percent from the same period the previous year and the biggest year-on-year increase for the period.

In order to trace the source of mobile phone calls, which are harder to track than land line calls, police in 21 prefectures, including the Metropolitan Police Department, have introduced location data reporting systems, with police in 10 other prefectures, including Aomori, planning to buy similar systems by the end of June this year.

Japanese Handset of the Year

The folks at Ktai Watch ran an open to all readers online poll from December 19 – 25th for best handset model of 2008. They managed to collect about 3,000 votes in all and have listed the top 50 Here.

The 931SH by Sharp for SoftBank Mobile topped the list with Fujitsu’s F-01A for DoCOMo coming in 2nd place. So, “What about the 3G iPhone” – we can just hear you screaming that from all over the world – well, it easily took top spot in the Smartphone section with over 60% of the votes 😎

Our Very Best Wishes to Everyone for 2009!