Sunday, 12 October 2008

SoftBank iPhone email notification

Thanks to the small SBankNotify additional app for the jailbroken iPhones you can finally get sound plus vibration notification when email is being received.

1) Add new Cydia source:
2) Reload packages lists and find SBankNotify package, it will be installed togeather with the BossPrefs if you don't have it already.

3) Start the BossPrefs and turn the SBankNotify ON

If you want to change the incoming melody, swap the /System/Library/Audio/UISounds/sbank.caf AIFF file with your custom ringtone.


Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Softbank's new data plan for iPhone

Revised Plan will vary according to the usage. Now you can cut down your monthly payment from 7280Yen to 2990Yen if you only use around 2MB (20175 packets) of 3G data.

Friday, 11 July 2008

1500 people in line for iPhone

The Daily Yomiuri features iPhone story on the frontpage.

More than 1500 people lined up overnight to get their hands on the Apple Inc. handset outside the store, where the much-hyped product first went on sale earlier than other stores in the morning. A kilometer-long line formed outside the store, which stopped accepting orders for the model before its doors opened at 7 a.m.

Link to the story (in Japanese)

Thursday, 10 July 2008

iPhone 3G commercial

iPhone commercial

The commercial, entitled Hallway, debuted during keynote speech at WWDC on June 9th - now in Japanese. Notice how iPhone's interface changed from English to Japanese too.

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

iPhone Japan events

iPhone is almost here! Here is a list of major events taking place around Tokyo.  
  • SoftBank Omotesando, from 6.45 - countdown ceremony
  • Yurakucho Bic Camera main building, from 11.10 countdown ceremony with the SoftBank's president  Masayoshi Son
  • Akiba and Umeda Yodobashi Camera Multimedia building, from 11.45 countdown events 
Will you attend? Are you standing in the line? Send us your story/photos/videos, did you get your iPhone? Share with us your story along with your link and nickname if you want a credit. 

Contact us at:

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Omotesando flagship store.

Omotesando SoftBank's flagship store for three days will sell only iPhones starting from 7AM July 11th. They also distribute brochures with waiting and contract instructions.

iPhone on sale starting from 7AM

According to the SoftBank's announcement iPhone will be sold starting from 7AM in the SoftBank flagship store - Omotesando, Tokyo.  Other shops will start sales at noon.  There is already about 20 people waiting in line in front of the Omotesando store. 

Source: Asahi

Apple Japan website updated

Apple Japan updated its website with iPhone buying information - you can get iPhone 3G at SoftBank stores (Apple Stores will not sell it).  

There is also a new information on the Softbank iPhone 3G website - SoftBank is preparing detailed information about iPhone sales process, updates soon.   

Friday, 4 July 2008

Japanese iPhone video tour

Apple sent out its lengthy video detailing the iPhone's 3G many features and uses. Instead of Bob Borchers we can see Japanese narrator wearing the same collarless black shirt. Unlike US version Japanese one does not present GPS navigation and traffic on the Google maps. How many more differences can you find?

Thursday, 3 July 2008

New SofBank's iPhone 3G website

SoftBank just started new iPhone 3G website.  Some parts of it are still disabled and not active. Probably the most interesting information that we can read so far is that the Internet speed for Google Maps and YouTube will be limited.

iPhone prices for current SoftBank cusotmers

If you are a SoftBank customer who wants to upgrade to iPhone, here is the price you will have to pay for the pleasure:

Discounted with the new super bonus:
8GB model 30240Yen - monthly 1260Yen
16GB model 41760Yen - monthly 1740Yen

Compared to MNP and "New Contract" price, both 8GB and 16GB will cost 300Yen more per month. Keep in mind that all of the current "New Super Bonus" customers will need to payback remaining installments (not discounted!) for their phones. One can check remaining payments on the My SoftBank website.

This information came to us directly from one of the SoftBank's store managers.

Japanese keyboard, closer look

Recently Japanese keyboard was demoed on youtube. Let's look at the screens from the newest beta 8 firmware. We can select several keyboards to be active at the same time and switch between them with just one tap. Thus, it is possible to combine Chinese character recognition input with Japanese keyboard. This of course would be only good in the case where particular Japanese Kanji looks exactly the same as Chinese Hanzi. Kana keyboard looks really sleek and it is pretty convenient to use. Predictive input works just like expected serving us possible sentence parts, particles, and words. First that comes to my mind is its similarity with NEC cellphones Japanese input. There is still qwerty keyboard that works just like regular PC one with predictive input. We are still hoping for a future update that would give us written Kanji recognition in a way that current Chinese input does.

Sunday, 29 June 2008

SoftBank website updates

SoftBank updated iPhone 3G FAQ section on their website.

Press Release in English was added as well.

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Omotesando - iPhone SoftBank event!

Omotesando, Softbank's flagship store.

7/11 - Worldwide iPhone selling event will be held at the Sofbank Omotesando store. Unlike in the United States iPhone 3G will not be sold at the Apple Store Japan. Thus, a special event will be organized at the Ometosando Softbank's flagship store starting from the morning (7/11). We don't know the details concerning the event but it looks like it will be co-organized with Apple Japan. In the other SoftBank's stores iPhone 3G will be sold starting from 9AM. SoftBank will sell iPhone through its online store starting from 7/11 as well.

Friday, 27 June 2008

Fake reservations. (iphone reservation dot com) claimed that you can reserve iPhone online on their website. SoftBank employees were informed not to organize any type of iPhone reservations. Websites like this collect personal data, promote other services, and operate on a basis of iPhone hype. Beware of scam services with fake Japan iPhone 3g reservations as well as fake iPhone online stores that recently started to grow on the Japanese Internet.

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Softbank internal staff meeting

SoftBank held "iPhone internal staff meeting". There are some informations circulating on the Japanese blogosphere and around iPhone community. Of course we can not be 100% sure about their authenticity, but since most of them came to us from different sources in the same version, we treat them as highly probable.

  • About the contract: In case of the new contracts there will be three payment methods: Credit Card, Bank Transfer and Automatic Transfer from the Post Office Account. No cash and convenient store payments. MNP and plan changing customers who used to pay by cash will have to change their payment method.
  • Inventory: Ten iPhones are packed inside of a distribution package. Each store will get about 30 of them Decision about exact amount of iPhones distributed among the stores will be made on July 4th.
  • Phonebook migration: There will be no phonebook migration service in the stores (copying contacts to iPhone from your old phone) . Windows migration utility will be distributed on a CD. "3G Cable" will be sold separately.
  • USIM card: Special USIM card will not work with foreign devices. iPhone won't operate without proper USIM card.
  • Apple Store: Apple Stores are not equipped with SoftBank's systems, thus iPhone can not be sold-activated there. Properly equipped (GINIE SoftBank system) volume sellers and stores should be able to handle selling of iPhones.
  • There will be "two steps" activation. First step - SoftBank store, Second step - iTunes activation at home.
There are also many rumors that the selling of 16GB iPhone was postponed. That is of course not good information as many of us are going for higher capacity iPhone.

Monday, 23 June 2008

iPhone 3G Price Plan - more details

"White Plan" for iPhone is called White Plan (i), same goes with Orange and Blue plans - Orange (i), Blue (i)

  • S! Mail is not available! new mail service exclusively for iPhone will be called email (i) and your mail address will be in the domain contrary to the current S! Mail domain - That being said, current SoftBank customers who switch to iPhone will need to change their SoftBank email address.
  • Student discount is not available.
  • There is a special USIM (SIM card) for iPhone. Customers who change their SoftBank phone to iPhone will be required to exchange their SIM card. Moreover, dedicated iPhone USIM (SIM card) can not be used in other phones. That prevents iPhone to be used with regular SoftBank price plans and additionally locks the device.
  • Voice call charges, plan's free minuets, basic charges are the same as the current price plans, for example in case of White Plan (i) voice calls to other domestic carriers' handsets as well as voice calls within SoftBank from 9PM till 1AM cost 21Yen per 30 sec. (42Yen per minute, tax included) - just as regular White Plan.
  • Tada tomo mail discount service can not be used with Email (i).
  • New Super Bonus Discount service works exactly the same.
  • Data plan is required.
So how much iPhone 3G will cost you? In case of White Plan:

16GB Model (tax included):

3360Yen iPhone installment
5985Yen data plan
315Yen S-Basic Plan
980Yen White Plan (i)
6Yen Universal Service

-1920Yen monthly discount

TOTAL: 8726Yen per month

8GB Model (tax included)
TOTAL: 8246Yen per month

SoftBank iPhone pricing!

Breaking News! iPhone will be offered as a part of SoftBank's White Plan

For Official Softbank Press Release click here.

8GB model - 23,040Yen, monthly charge 980Yen , Data Plan 5,985Yen
+ (315Yen monthly - S! Basic Pack) =

7,280Yen monthly plus Phone Price:

8GB - 23,040Yen
16GB - 34,560 Yen

(It is also possible to get it with Blue and Organe Plan.)

Phone Price will be paid in monthly installments:

8GB model:

Monthly installment 2,880Yen × 24 months
Special discount 1,920Yen×24 months
Phone Cost: 960Yen×24months=23,040Yen

16GB model:

Monthly installment 3,360Yen × 24 months
Special discount 1,920Yen×24 months
Phone Cost: 1,440Yen×24months=34,560Yen

Click here to read how Special Discount works
More about White Plan in English click here.

More Details here!

Sunday, 22 June 2008

iPhone on the frontpage

Softbank updated homepage with the iPhone banner that redirects to the Apple website. There is no iPhone information except FAQ section and Press release on the official Sofbank websites.

Friday, 20 June 2008

NTT Docomo - meeting of stockholders

Today, starting from 10am NTT Docomo held general meeting of stockholders. Possibility of selling iPhone was discussed. Managing director priced iPhone for its touch panel and established Apple fan base. Modified LG Prada and Sharp SH906i are the two touch panel devices offered by Docomo.

Docomo declined to answer any questions related to talks with Apple.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

Leaked SoftBank pamphlet.

This supposed to be SoftBank's brochure/explanation materials for its employees. We believe it is not fake and it will be distributed during today's meeting.

91% of Japanese will not buy iPhone - oh really?

"Survey: 91% of Japanese Will Not Buy 'iPhone' "- recently we are bombarded with this misinformation on the blogosphere... but let's look closer:
First, dig to the source - from the official iSHARE press release:

調査対象:CLUB BBQ無料メール転送サービス会員

Survey target: members of the CLUB BBQ free email forwarding service

Besides the fact that the sample does not represent Japanese cellphone market its size (around 400 answers) is too small to be taken seriously.

So the headlines should read: “Survey: 91% of CLUB BBQ members don’t want an iPhone”

If you did not skip your statistic classes you should know that the best way to avoid a biased or unrepresentative sample is to select a random sample, also known as a probability sample. A random sample is defined as a sample where the probability that any individual member from the population being selected as part of the sample is exactly the same as any other individual member of the population - and for sure not all of them should be BBQ CLUB members.

PS. Luis Vuitton Survey is an another good example of Japanese misleading statistics causing misinformation in the western world.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

SoftBank updates FAQ section

SoftBank updated FAQ section with iPhone Questions and Answers. So far nothing new in the answers.


Tuesday, 10 June 2008

SoftBank and Apple to Bring iPhone 3G to Japan on July 11

SOFTBANK MOBILE and Apple today announced that the highly anticipated iPhone™ 3G will be available in Japan on July 11.

“I am delighted at this opportunity to partner with Apple,” said Masayoshi Son, SBM chairman and CEO. “SBM’s and Apple’s shared vision of promoting the innovative integration of the Internet and mobile phone through the distribution of iPhone is exciting. iPhone has been enthusiastically received around the world, and we think it will be popular in Japan as well.”

“Japan is one of the world’s most advanced mobile markets and we are thrilled to partner with SoftBank to launch iPhone 3G there next month,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s COO. “iPhone 3G is an amazing product and we think customers in Japan will love it as much as we do.”

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

SoftBank Announces iPhone for Japan

SOFTBANK MOBILE Corp. today announced it has signed an agreement with Apple® to bring the iPhone™ to Japan later this year.


Monday, 31 March 2008

Apple secures Japanese iPhone naming rights

Nagoya-based Aiphone chose this week to tell the world that it has been in talks with Apple since last summer about giving the US firm the right to use the ‘iPhone’ trademark in Japan.
Aiphone Co Ltd, which handles interphones and other products, announced March 24, 2008, that it reached a friendly agreement with Apple Inc after negotiating issues concerning the similarity between the brand name owned by Aiphone and Apple's mobile phone "iPhone."

Source: TechOn

Saturday, 29 March 2008

iPhone launch seen in 2nd quarter, 3G in June?

Bank of America analyst Scott Craig: "Our latest channel checks point to a significant production build of a 3G iPhone beginning in the month of June after an initial small build in May,"

Current Analysis analyst Avi Greengart said it would make sense for Apple to bring out its high-speed iPhone in June around the time it launches an upgrade to iPhone software.

Source: IGM, Reuters

Hon Hai Gets Apple Order For New iPhones

The person, who declined to be named, said Hon Hai would be producing next- generation iPhones for Apple and is the exclusive contract manufacturer for the new phones.

A Hon Hai official, who declined to be named, told Dow Jones Newswires that the company was in talks with Apple for the supply of a "more advanced version" of the current iPhone. The Hon Hai official declined to provide further details.

Source: CNNMoney

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

3G iPhone between April-June 2008?

In a research note today following a series of meetings with Taiwanese electronics companies, Citigroup’s Richard Gardner says “several sources confirmed the introduction of a new 3G iPhone” in calendar Q2.

Source: Barron's

Saturday, 19 January 2008

Press reports reported on a survey conducted by JR Tokai Express Research into iPhone. English version available on What Japan Thinks.

Forbes reports on Apple's fight in Japan.

Sunday, 13 January 2008

Japan wants SoftBank iPhone deal?

All in One Internet Magazine 2.0 holds a pool - "Who do you want to carry iPhone?"

As of today SofBank tops with over 40% of votes.