Sign of the Times
Sign of the Times

Mobile Software Goes Overseas

While a slowdown in new announcements can be expected during the upcoming shogatsu New Year holiday period, 2003 promises to provide even more activity now that UK-based Vodafone has launched a 3G network in Japan and is expected to seek know-how and technology from Japan for its operations elsewhere. Further, Japanese software developers are sure to continue looking outside this country’s near-saturated market for new sales opportunities.

Love, War, Wireless Internet, and Nokia VP on Mobile Software

DoCoMo’s recent troubles highlight a fundamental aspect of Japan’s wireless Internet revolution that I haven’t seen discussed much – namely, the sheer improbability of it all. In 1999 and 2000, during the ascendancy of i-mode, headlines and media quotes from interested parties were quick to praise the insight and innovation of those involved in i-mode’s creation, including the famous Enoki-Matsunaga-Natsuno troika as well as sundry network engineers, Internet-savvy marketers, and handset designers both inside DoCoMo and out.

CTIA Notes and NEC 3G Recalls

WWJ contributor Michael Thuresson was in Las Vegas, Nevada, last week and managed to pull himself away from the one-armed bandits long enough to drop in on the CTIA “Wireless IT and Internet 2002” fall show. His report below was culled from a late-night, bleary-eyed email dispatch (italicized annotations partly contributed by me). Who says war correspondents in Kandahar have more fun than tech stringers in Vegas? 😉

Hello Kitty's Revenge

Early this year, there was some comment in the open press concluding that the US was the world’s leading source of wireless innovation and technology expertise (“Europe Had Decisive Wireless Lead, But Lost It to US With Poor Moves”). Well, the good news is that finding some of those smaller, innovative creators of made-right-here-in-Japan, ready-to-be-exported mobile technology is getting an awful lot easier. We spent yesterday at Sun’s JavaOne conference in Yokohama, and there was an interesting line-up of companies displaying their wares on the showroom floor.

Standards-based Apps Rule, Except…

Getting a handle on the big & little pictureOpenwave is one of the key players in software and all things wireless, and are a vendor to both J-Phone and KDDI. We interview a senior product manager on standards-based applications, and why MMS may fail like WAP 1.0. We also take a first-hand look at a lively new instant messaging application for keitai and PC.

Can JAVA find Santa in Tokyo

Can JAVA find Santa in Tokyo A Wireless Watch Japan interview from Tokyo with the Java development team at

We take a look at Kizna’s combo Java-and-GPS software used to create a unique seek-Santa game played out in real time on the streets of Odaiba.