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.