Posts Tagged japan
If you were hoping to get your hands on the newly announced, Android carrying Nokia X series, and you live in North America, Korea or Japan we’ve got some bad news for you. According to Jussi Nevanlinna, VP for mobile phone marketing, it’s not going to happen. As he put it:
“These are global products, which will be available pretty much everywhere except North America, Korea and Japan.”
Whether it’s because Nokia doesn’t think it can crack markets that are already established with flagship and mid-tier phones, or it just wants to focus on emerging markets is anyone’s guess. Given that the devices will range from €89 to €109 ($121.59 to $148.92), they are certainly budget friendly. That being said, more Nokia X devices are in the work, with the hopes to push the price even further down.
It’s certainly a blow to those of us in these established markets who wanted to try a Nokia Android device.
source: GSM Arena
Come comment on this article: Nokia X Series not coming to the US, Korea, Canada, or Japan
We’re sure you know about the Nokia X trio of smartphones by now after the Finnish manufacturer announced the handsets at the MWC earlier this Monday. However, bad news awaits customers in the U.S., Canada, South Korea and Japan as the company has announced its intentions to not launch the smartphones in these regions. The trio of Nokia X devices will reportedly be targeted towards crucial markets of Asia, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Latin American region.
This information comes straight from the Nokia VP for mobile marketing, Jussi Nevanlinna so it can’t get any more official than this. This is quite disappointing news for fans of the aforementioned regions and we think Nokia missed a trick by leaving these regions out of the list. The demand would definitely be there in these countries despite the likes of Samsung and LG dominating the Android sphere. But given the low price tag at €89 ($122), €99 ($135) and €109 ($149), Nokia probably thinks these devices have a better shot at succeeding in developing markets.
Source: Nokia Conversations
Via: Unwired View
The post Nokia X series to skip the U.S., Canada, Japan and South Korea appeared first on The Droid Guy.
It’s all about stickers, really. LINE means stickers, but as the company keeps telling us, its apps do so much more than that — and even more starting next month. The Japanese messaging service is launching a new data-based call service that attempts to undercut the voice-call pricing on typical land-lines and mobile carriers. With a pay-as-you-go and 30-day plan both outlined at the company’s showcase event, it’s scheduled to launch this March in Japan, US, Mexico, Spain, Thailand and the Philippines. For its native country, the 30-day plan (priced at one minute for 6.5 yen, roughly 6.4 cents), will offer up to a maximum of 60 minutes maximum, encompassing both mobile and landline calls. A separate call credit plan will cost 14 yen per minute to mobile phones (including overseas) and three yen to landlines.
The company is aiming to expand who LINE users can contact within its app service. An interesting feature is that on smartphones, it will appear as if it’s simply a normal phone call — we saw a demonstration of how incoming calls would appear on an iPhone and (as you’ll see after the break), it looks identical. To drum up support, Naver plans to offer the service to 1,300,000 businesses and stores across Japan, as well as 100,000 free 100-yen LINE Call samples to existing users too.
App Annie and IHS have released their latest numbers, and there is one overriding narrative: we love media. Our spending on digital movies, games, and apps rose 30% in 2013 when compared to 2012, with mobile app spending seeing a steady upward trend. Spending in and on apps was dominated by games overall, with some countries a
bit lot more into the genre than others.
Digital media also saw a huge upward trend in 2013. According to the research, spending on digital movies jumped 21% worldwide in 2013. The US is naturally the leader here, as we’ve long enjoyed a wealth of digital media content, but we’ve got company. Japan and South Korea aren’t far behind — each of those countries saw digital media spending increase 40% over 2012. Spending for all digital media worldwide jumped 30% in 2013.
Games is far and away the largest spend of consumers here, with apps seeing a healthy growth trend for spending. Digital games also grew, but managed to stay pretty even with a 1.0x increase. Gaming app spending jumped 2.9x, and though still a ways behind digital game spending, trends suggest it won’t take long to catch and surpass that sector. If you’re curious what the difference is, a digital game would be one you buy on Xbox, PlayStation or PC, while an app is just that — an app. If it’s unthinkable that we could spend more on apps than digital games, think again; Japan already spends more on game apps than digital games.
You may be wondering who’s buying what, considering all this growth. The US is the most diverse when it comes to spending, thanks to our long-standing media choices. That’s likely why we lead in online movie spending, too. When it comes to online music, the UK is tops. Game app spending was of course dominated by Japan, but South Korea absolutely loves digital gaming. The country almost doubled up on digital game spending in the US, and easily outdid Japan in that regard. Overall, South Korea edged out Japan for total gaming spend.
There are plenty of metrics to take in, but one thing is certain: we love gaming. Though digital gaming is giving way to gaming apps, we still spend much more on the genre than anything else. If you’re wondering where to sell an app that isn’t a game, try France or Germany — they love non-game apps more than the other countries in the study.
Japan’s answer to Amazon, Rakuten, has just got into the mobile communications business by purchasing internet calling app-maker Viber for $900 million. Viber was one of the first to introduce 3G VoIP on the iPhone, and now lets you call any land-line or mobile phone, send messages and even push-to-talk. The app is available on all major mobile and desktop platforms, and is one of Skype’s biggest rivals with over 300 million users worldwide. According to the WSJ, Viber’s global userbase helped draw Rakuten, which is trying to expand its business interests beyond Japan’s shores. It also recently purchased a huge stake in Pinterest and bought e-reader maker Kobo. Rakuten’s CEO confirmed that Viber “perfectly compliments” its goals and said the acquisition “will enable it to penetrate new markets with multiple digital content offerings.”
We have seen a number of leaks regarding a Wi-Fi-only version of the Xperia Z Ultra, and Sony finally made it official. It’s essentially an Xperia Z Ultra smartphone without the cellular radios. They are marketing it as a tablet, and it just might be the smallest tablet yet with its 6.4-inch (1080p) display.
The rest of the specs include a 2.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage, microSD for expanded storage, 8MP rear camera, 2.2MP front-facing camera, and Android 4.3. Also, of course, just like the smartphone version, it’s dust and water resistant and is only 6.5mm thick.
For now, it will only be available in Japan for a price of ¥51,800 ($495). If you’re in Japan, look for it on January 24th in either black, white, or purple.
source: Sony Japan
Come comment on this article: Wi-Fi-only Sony Xperia Z Ultra tablet officially announced for Japan
Sharp coming up with the goods in the form of a new tablet and smartphone, not that we'll see them in the west
KDDI over in Japan has been rolling out a bunch of new devices today. Among them are some we're already familiar with such as the LG G Flex and the new WiFi only Sony Xperia Z Ultra. And then there are those we'll never get to see in western markets, such as this tablet, and a new smartphone from Sharp. Both of which are packing some pretty impressive hardware specs.
The Aquos Pad pictured here is a 7-inch tablet, running the now somewhat outdated Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. But the interesting part is taking place around back. For this tablet contains a smartphone-class camera; a 13MP rear shooter. We don't know if it's actually any good, but if you're one who enjoys taking photos using a tablet, it has to be up there with the best of them. And, with a 1920×1200 display round the front, those full resolution photographs should be pretty great to look at.
Sony Xperia Z Ultra Finally Lives Up To Its Tablet Aspirations With New WiFi-Only Version, Launching In Japan This Week
The Sony Xperia Z Ultra has a 6.4-inch screen, which is dangerously close to the the tablet side of things. Apparently Sony agrees – a new version of the Xperia Z Ultra has been announced in Japan that does away with the cellular connectivity. Now it’s just a tiny tablet instead of a monstrously huge phone.
Other than the removal of the cellular radios, this looks to be the exact same device.
- Xperia Z Ultra LTE Now Available For Purchase In The US Direct From Sony, Xperia Z1 And Smartwatch 2 Up For Pre-Order
- Sony Releases Open Source Files For the Gigantic Xperia Z Ultra
- Sony Xperia Z Launching Later This Month On Bell Mobility As A Canadian Exclusive
- Sony Announces The Xperia Z1f – Most Of The Specs You Cared About From The Z1 In A Smaller Package
Sony Xperia Z Ultra Finally Lives Up To Its Tablet Aspirations With New WiFi-Only Version, Launching In Japan This Week was written by the awesome team at Android Police.
Price set at $495 for launch Jan. 24; availability in other regions not yet confirmed
Following a string of rumors, Sony has announced a Wifi-only version of its 6.4-inch behemoth Xperia Z Ultra for Japan. Released as a nearly identical version of a phone which really felt more like a tablet in the first place, the Wifi-only model packs the same internals, screen and build as its mobile data-enabled counterpart. That means a 2.2GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, 1080p display, 32GB of storage and an 8MP camera.
Even down to the color options — you have black, white and purple — this looks to be the same big 'ol slab of Sony that we know from before. It's funny to see a device that was marketed as a purpose-built phone now simply called a "tablet" in marketing materials with no change in screen size, but we're inclined to think the Xperia Z Ultra is better suited as a tablet device.
Sony Japan pegs the price of the Wifi-only model at ¥51800, or about $495 USD, with availability online from the Sony store on January 24th. There's no direct indication of availability in other countries, unfortunately, but we wouldn't be surprised if Sony brings this Wifi-only model to more areas considering it doesn't need to be wrangled by the carriers.
Dropping its radios for cell service and turning itself into a tablet… The 6.4-inch Xperia Z Ultra may be big enough to pull it off, but are you willing to pay just under $500 (52,000 yen) for the pleasure? Sony hopes you will. It’s a Japan-only deal for now (neatly tying in with KDDI’s own 4G-capable Z Ultra, also announced today), but we could imagine it filling tablets shelves at your nearest electronics store. If Sony tells us anything more, we’ll let you know.
Source: Sony Japan
Xiaomi is renowned for making stellar handsets, and offering them at unreal prices. Through accessory sales, they make up profit “lost” via device sale markdowns. Wildly popular, and with sales growing exponentially, the Chinese OEM is said to be taking their business model one step further by offering a smartphone for around $50.
While we’ve seen this from others like MicroMax, an offering from Xioami is intriguing. They have an established track record of bringing strong devices to market at low prices, where their handset often sell out in minutes via their online marketplace. Creating a frenzy has been accomplished with higher end devices, and it seems as though Xiaomi may be poised to do it again.
This move is said to be focussed on Japan, where Xiaomi now has help in bringing their devices outside of China. Though not thought of as an emerging market, Japan is likely — like any other market — intrigued by good, low-cost devices. A move like that would also be a really great way for Xiaomi to make a big splash in a new market.
Though unconfirmed, bold moves are nothing new to Xiaomi, so we’re not going to discount this just yet. We also don’t have information on what device could be on offer, or when it could be released. Though unconfirmed, it’s not out of the realm of possibility, so we’ll just lock this away in the recesses of our mind until we hear more.
- Xiaomi MI3 smartphone launch brings 90 second sellout
- Xiaomi runs through 110,000 MI3 smartphones in “Singles Day” flash sale
- Xiaomi Mi3 sales hit 150,000 in latest 10 minute flash sale
- Xiaomi image leak tips “Magic Cube” modular phone setup
- Xiaomi sold 18.7 million handsets in 2013, almost double what they shipped in 2012
The Sony Xperia Z1 f was announced way back in October through Japanese carrier NTT Docomo for the local market. The handset however made its way to the Japanese markets very recently (December 19) and a new report claims that it has been a huge success so far. Japan isn’t traditionally favorable towards Samsung or HTC smartphones, so the likes of the Apple iPhone 5s and the 5c were dominating sales charts since September. However, the arrival of the Xperia Z1 f has turned things in favor of Sony.
The Xperia Z1 f is effectively the most popular smartphone in Japan now, which is good news for Sony. But sadly, the good news ends there as its reach is limited to only Japan for the time being. The smartphone has immense potential to make it big in world markets, thanks to its small size and ultra-powerful hardware inside. Although it’s relatively smaller compared to a conventional Android handset, it features a flagship level hardware inside which makes all the difference, especially for a ‘Mini’ variant of a popular flagship. The Xperia Z1 f features the same 20.7MP Exmor RS camera from the Xperia Z1 as well as the 2.2 GHz quad core Snapdragon 800 SoC, making it one of the most powerful mini handsets in the market now. It is hoped that Sony will launch the smartphone in global markets soon, hopefully during the CES event in early January.
Source: Sony Viet – Translated
Via: Phone Arena
The post Report claims the Sony Xperia Z1 f outsold the iPhones in Japan appeared first on The Droid Guy.
With a good week or two left before the rumored end of year production schedule, Toshiba has announced the availability of its TransferJet product. This pair of USB and micro-USB sticks is supposed to be Toshiba’s answer to the problem of quick and easy transfer of files between a mobile device and a computer, but it has its own quirks that might make it even less feasible.
It’s been almost a whole year since Toshiba first unveiled this wireless transfer technology at CES 2013 in the beginning of the year. It appeared in a more refined version in early October at CEATEC in Japan. In concept, it utilizes wireless technology to quickly and conveniently transfer files between a computer with a regular USB port and a mobile device, particularly an Android one, with a micro-USB port without fumbling around with cables. Unfortunately, there are a few caveats to the the whole thing that makes this solution less than perfect.
For one, the device compatibility is a bit limited. On the computer side, it requires Windows 7 or 8, which will leave Mac and Linux users out in the cold. On the mobile side, it only works with Android, and not all Android devices but only those running Android 4.0 or higher. But more importantly, the “wireless” aspect of the sticks isn’t all that Toshiba makes it out to be. Unlike Bluetooth, it requires a much closer proximity between the two sticks, almost within NFC distances. On the other hand, unlike NFC or other wireless transfer alternatives, it does allow transfers or large data at faster rates.
The Toshiba TransferJet sticks are available in Japan for around $38. At the moment, there is no word on when it will be made available in international markets.
Sony has just officially launched the Xperia Z1 f smartphone in Japan, a couple of months after its initial announcement through local carrier NTT Docomo. The smartphone can now be purchased in Japan through the carrier and Sony will also make the smartphone available to global markets in the coming weeks.
The smartphone costs 79,800 Yen or $767 off contract and unlocked, which is quite the price to pay for a small sized handset. But given the hardware that is packed inside, we don’t think the pricing is over the top.
The Xperia Z1 f comes with a 4.3 inch 720p display, a 20.7MP camera on the back similar to the one on the Xperia Z1, 2GB of RAM, a 2.2 GHz Snapdragon 800 SoC, a 2,300 mAh battery and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. The global sibling of the Xperia Z1 f is known as the Xperia Z1S and is all set for a major announcement in a couple of weeks from now during CES.
Source: NTT Docomo – Japanese
Via: Android Central
The post Sony officially launches the Xperia Z1 f in Japan through NTT Docomo appeared first on The Droid Guy.
Miniature Xperia Z1 hits Docomo amid rumors of upcoming international version
As expected, today's the day the Sony Xperia Z1 f hits store shelves in Japan. The Docomo-branded phone is effectively a shrunk-down version of the Xperia Z1, Sony's current high-end handset. However unlike many "mini" versions of flagship smartphones, the Z1 f retains the high-end internals of its big brother — including a Snapdragon 800 CPU, 2GB of RAM and a 20.7-megapixel Exmor RS camera unit — all packed into a smaller chassis with a 4.3-inch 720p display.
Full price for the phone is listed at ¥79,800 ($768), which is reduced when buying on contract. The device comes in white, black, lime and pink color options.
The Japanese launch comes as rumors swirl surrounding a possible international version for the Xperia Z1 f. A device codenamed "Anami" recently passed through the FCC looking very similar to the Japanese model, but with radio bands suggesting it may be a European handset. The name "Xperia Z1 S" has been suggested as a possible name for an international version, and if the reports are accurate then it might make an appearance at Sony's CES 2014 press conference in early January.
In the spirit of year-end top lists and reviews, mobile app market analyst Distimo has published its 2013 Year in Review. And its insight into which apps and markets made it to the top is quite interesting.
In terms of regional markets, Distimo’s figures show Japan as the top revenue-generating country in Google Play Store, followed by South Korea, and the US. This analysis meshes with earlier observations made by AppAnie, showing that Japanese users spend 10% more than those in the US. It was also observed in AppAnnie’s report that most of these are spent on games, which Distimo independently confirms.
In fact, Distimo’s most grossing apps of the year is lead by games, with Candy Crush Saga sitting at the very top, followed by Puzzle & Dragons. And yes, Japan has reportedly been one of the top sources of revenue for Candy Crush. In line with this, it was discovered that this year, the freemium model has risen to become the most popular business model not only in Google Play Store but in Apple’s App Store as well. This model, which offers apps for free but includes in-app purchases, is sometimes frowned upon. Data, however, shows, that it is preferred over paid apps with or without in-app purchases, especially when it comes to games.
These figures, however, are not the final figures for this year, as it only accounts for the period of January to November 2013. Distimo expects a sudden surge of purchases before this year ends, but it won’t be a surprise if it converges around games again.
A new report by AppAnnie has some interesting statistics about Japanese spending habits in the Play Store. According to their research, Play Store Japan is more lucrative than the US when comparing user spending habits. The Japanese Android user will spend roughly 10% more than their US counterpart, an odd turnaround considering that last year Japan was spending about 40% less that we did stateside.
AppAnnie also notes that the Play Store in Japan is the only market is which Google stays competitive with Apple and the App Store. As we know, spending leads to revenue, and that leads to development. For interested Developers, the trend is only going to get better; the percentage of smartphones in Japan is expected to hit 62% by 2014, compared to 50% stateside.
Oddly, Japanese consumers also spent more on games, though they played them less. In Japan, they spend about 1/3 the time we do gaming, but spent more on game apps than their US counterparts. In terms of revenue, this is promising, but we’re smart to remember a few factors that might be contributing to these statistics.
First, while they often shed a light on metrics, we don’t put all of our apples into one basket. AppAnnie has some great metrics, but we don’t consider them to tell the whole tale. Also, we don’t have data on paid vs free apps in Japan. If, like the App Store, there are simply more apps demanding of a few Yen, they’ll spend. More to the point, they may have to pay for apps we can get free stateside, which would lead to a giant discrepancy in the data.
- Google reportedly seeking to shift higher portion of Play Store revenue to itself
- Google Play Store vending machines hit Japan
- Sonic The Hedgehog 2 arrives in the Play Store
- Santa Tracker app hits the Play Store, now with Chromecast support
- Cover, the contextual lockscreen now available in the Play Store
It’s not only Chinese manufacturers that have a monopoly in the cloning business as a Japanese company has just recently its very own version of the iPhone 5C. Japanese mobile phone manufacturer iosys unveiled its latest product called the ioPhone5 (notice the added o between I and P) which is very much similar in design to the iPhone 5C.
In Japan today Apple is one of the hottest brands around and its market share is growing faster than in its home country the US. Reports indicate that Apple has a 37% smartphone market share in Japan compared to 36% in the US. Sales of the iPhone got a boost when Japan’s largest wireless carrier NTT DoCoMo began offering the iPhone to its more than 61 million customers.
Riding on the popularity of the iPhone 5C is the Japanese clone version called the ioPhone5. This clone looks very similar in design to the original however that’s where the similarities end. Inside the device is a different story.
The ioPhone5 has a 4 inch display with a resolution of 854 x 480 pixels which is far less than that of the 5C which has 640 x 1136 pixels. Powering the device is a low cost dual core Mediatek MT6572 which is very much behind in terms of performance to the A5 chip used by the 5C. Other features of this device include a 512 MB RAM and 4 GB of internal storage space. It runs on Android 4.2 which surprisingly isn’t themed to look like iOS. This device even comes in 5 different colors which are White, Blue, Green, Yellow and Pink, just like its Apple counterpart.
This model is expected to go on sale this December 20 in Japan and will have a retail price of 15,490 JPY or roughly $150.
It is uncommon for a Japanese company to make a cloned smartphone product as we are used to seeing this being done by Chinese companies. It looks like China will be getting competition in this category.
The post ioPhone5 Is A Japanese Manufactured iPhone 5C Clone appeared first on The Droid Guy.
Fujitsu has just recently announced that its new smartphone called Disney Mobile On docomo F-03F will become available this coming December 13 exclusively in Japan under the NTT DOCOMO network. The device is pre-loaded with Disney content ranging from themes, wallpapers, Mickey Mouse motif, and hundreds of art content. It also has access to the Disney Market online store where consumers can download more than 30,000 content including applications and TV shows.
The F-03F will be available in three colors, white, pink, and blue. It will come with seven kinds of Disney characters as well as Disney fonts.
As far as specifications goes the device has top tier specs and even includes a fingerprint scanner and an infrared port.
Fujitsu Disney Mobile on docomo F-03F Technical Specifications
- Dimensions (width x height x depth): 67 x 134 x 10.3 millimeters
- Weight: 148 grams (battery included)
- Cellular Networks: GSM850, GSM900, GSM1800, GSM1900, UMTS800 (B6), UMTS850 (B5), UMTS2100 (B1)
- Cellular data: GPRS, EDGE, UMTS, HSDPA, HSUPA, FOMA
- Operating System: Google Android 4.2.2 Japanese
- CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 quad-core processor 2.1 GHz
- GPU: Qualcomm Adreno 330
- RAM: 2 GB SDRAM 800 Mhz
- ROM: 32 GB
- Display: 4.7 inch full HD display 720 x 1280 pixels
- Expansion Interface: microSD, microSDHC, TransFlash, microSDXC, Supports High Capacity (SD 2.0/HC) memory cards with capacity of up to 32G
- USB: USB 2.0 host/client, Hi-Speed (480Mbit/s), USB On-The-Go 1.3 compliant, USB Series Micro-B (Micro-USB) connector
- Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.0, Internal antenna
- Wireless LAN: IEEE 802.11a, IEEE 802.11b, IEEE 802.11g, IEEE 802.11n, IEEE 802.11ac
- Infrared: Supported
- Camera: 13MP rear, 1.31MP front
- Battery: 2600 mAh lithium ion
The F-03F smartphone makes use of a pearl powder coating to bring out an amazing finish in pink, white, or blue. The rear panel has a Mickey Mouse icon that’s designed to bring a sense of depth and transparency. One interesting feature of this device is that its earphone jack accessory is made of polarized pearl which sparkles when light hits it or when a headset accessory is plugged in.
This device makes use of the Human Centric Engine technology of Fujitsu. It comes equipped with a Super Clear mode which automatically adjusts the brightness of the screen depending on the environment to provide optimum viewing results. The display won’t turn off if it is being held making it convenient to view content. There’s also a Touch Lock mode which temporarily blocks any touch operation on the screen making it easy for kids to view videos.
One other great feature of this device is that it is IPX5 and IPX8 certified. This means that the device is able to perform normally even if sprayed with water or submerged under 1.5 meters of water for 30 minutes.
While this device is only going to be released in Japan those wishing to use it in other countries may use it with compatible GSM networks as long as the device is unlocked.
¥1500 ($15) to ¥20,000 ($194) cards available
Japan has joined the exclusive list of countries offering Google Play gift cards for sale. According to Google's support site, the cards will be available in ¥1500 ($15) , ¥3,000 ($29), ¥5,000 ($49), ¥10,000 ($97), ¥15,000 ($146) and ¥20,000 ($195) denominations, making Japan's cards the most valuable.
The introduction of such a high denomination is a curious move, since Google Play gift cards are currently limited for use with books, music, movies, TV shows and magazines, not devices. So with the top-level ¥20,000 bundle you're looking at an awful lot of digital content.
In addition to Japan, Google Play gift cards are also available in the U.S., Canada, UK, Australia, France and Germany in a variety of sizes, most between $15 and $50.
Miniature Xperia Z1 scheduled for pre-holiday arrival on Docomo
We've known for a while that Sony's dinky Xperia Z1 f was due to arrive on NTT Docomo in Japan this month, but now we have a firm date — Thursday, Dec. 19. An update to the carrier's online store reveals that the pint-sized version of the Xperia Z1 will launch in black, white, lime and pink just in time for the holidays, though there's still no hint of any Western release.
The Xperia Z1 f packs similar internals to its larger counterpart, only with a smaller 4.3-inch display and slightly reduced battery capacity, making it a tempting proposition for those wanting a smaller Android phone that doesn't skimp on hardware muscle. Given Sony's traditional release early-year cycles, there's a good chance we might see an international version of the device — the rumored Z1 S perhaps — at the company's CES press conference in Las Vegas early next month.
TV shows from Google expands to only the third global location with Japanese availability
The slow, slow rollout of Google Play TV Shows continues, with the addition of Japan as just the third country in which the content is available. Having been a U.S. exclusive for so long, British customers were able to buy TV Shows as of August this year, and now the goodness expands over to Japan. Shows can be watched on the web, or via the Play Movies and TV app on your Android device.
Beyond the kind of content we'd expect to see in the west, the Japanese Play Store also seems to be offering a host of local content as well. If you're over in Japan, hit up the Play Store now and take a look.
via Android Police
There’s a treat today for our Japanese friends courtesy of Google. TV Shows have been added to the Play Store in the Land of the Rising Sun, and there looks to be a good selection. This is only the third country to get TV through Google Play after the US and United Kingdom.
Users in Japan will see a big banner upon visiting the Play Store which informs them of the new TV show listings.
- The Nexus 7 Is Now Available In Japan
- LG Nexus 4 Now Officially On Sale In The Google Play Store In South Korea
- Google Play "Longest Day Deals" Suddenly Unleashed, Offers Popular Apps, Games, Music, Books, and Movies On The Cheap [Updated x2]
- Google Releases Google Places For Business App, Manage Your Places Listing Right From Your Android Device
After announcing a new 4K capable screen that could be used in a large tablet, Japan Display Inc. is back with another announcement from the FPD International 2013 event in Japan. This time, JDI announces a new 5.4-inch TFT LCD panel running at 1440×2560 resolution, giving it a resolution density of 543 pixels per inch. JDI says they have optimized power consumption and the physical size so it could be used in a smartphone. Since Sony is one of the partners in JDI, don’t be surprised to see one of their devices as the first to incorporate this new screen.
Along with the 5.4-inch size, JDI also introduced a 6.2-inch version capable of running at the same resolution. Due to the larger size, the pixels per inch figure drops to 473ppi, which is still quite impressive.
Come comment on this article: Japan Display announces 5.4-inch 543ppi screen for smartphones
A cooperative effort between Japanese companies Sony Mobile Display, Toshiba Mobile Display, and Hitachi Displays, collectively known as Japan Display Inc., has announced their success in producing a 4K resolution screen (3840×2160) in a 12.1-inch form factor. The screen uses TFT LCD technology to produce a 365 pixels per inch picture. According to JDI, they have also managed to control heat and power usage for the display and kept it thin enough so that it could actually be deployed as part of a consumer device such as a notebook computer or a tablet device. The product is being shown at the FPD International 2013 event in Japan this week.
Many people have expressed skepticism at the need for 4K resolutions on anything smaller than a large television, but it seems manufacturers are continuing to work on producing screens capable of this resolution in a mobile device. Do you think the market will reach the point where 4K capable devices are the standard?
Come comment on this article: Japan Display takes screen resolution to new level with 12.1-inch 4K display
International version of Japan's Xperia Z1 f inbound?
Ever since Japan's NTT Docomo got the Xperia Z1 f — a 4.3-inch version of the Xperia Z1, with all the juicy specs left intact — we've been hoping for news of a wider international launch. Now there's the first sign that such a device might be headed our way, as the usually reliable @evleaks has published images of a Sony "Xperia Z1S." The shot appears to show a smaller Xperia Z1 with similar button placement and software, but right now that's all we have to go on.
If it's anything like the version due to be sold in Japan, this handset should pack a Snapdragon 800 CPU, 2GB of RAM and a 20.7-megapixel Exmor RS rear camera — in essence, all the internal hardware that matters — along with a smaller 4.3-inch 720p display. Time will tell what form the "Xperia Z1S" eventually takes, but the shortage of high-end Android phones with top-level specs right now means there's definitely an audience for this kind of device.
We recently heard how Sony was looking to claim the number 3 position in terms of worldwide Android sales. The catch, at the time they did not offer much in the way of specifics. While they haven’t revealed all of the plans, a recent Reuters report does have Sony CEO Kaz Hirai talking about how they are looking to achieve that goal by going through Europe and Japan.
Notably missing here is the US and China. According to Hirai, Europe and Japan account for a collective 60 percent of smartphone sales and based on that, they are “the most important areas” for Sony. Further chatter from Hirai includes how they plan to “put substantial resources there” and how they are “not yet” looking to move into the US because “it’s not realistic to try to do everything at once.”
There wasn’t much further given in terms of when Sony may start pushing harder in the US (or China) and Hirai simply mentioned they will “start gradually.” Keeping on the topic of the US, the carrier availability is quite limited with T-Mobile being the only real option. There are however, unlocked handsets available. But as we often see, they hold less of an appeal to the average customer.
Sony does have some strength in their home market of Japan. They are currently ranked second, behind Apple and it looks like the competition between the two will continue. NTT DoCoMo, which is the largest carrier in Japan has focused on the Xperia line in the past, but they also recently came to an agreement with Apple and will have the iPhone available.
- Sony Xperia Z Ultra arrives unlocked for those in the US
- Sony Walkman NW-ZX1 and NW-F880 series unveiled, coming in October [UPDATE]
- Sony Xperia Z1 tipped to sport IR blaster, 32 GB storage in Japan
- Sony CP12 Power Cover ready to protect and energize your Xperia Z Ultra
- Sony Xperia Z1 f SO-02F “Honami mini” unveiled, headed for NTT DoCoMo
Leaves questions over whether the Xperia Z1 may make it to the U.S.
Sony's CEO, Kaz Hirai, has been speaking to Japanese media, with market share and breaking into the U.S. in particular on the table. With Japan and Europe accounting for around 60% of Sony's smartphone sales, and it seems priority one for Hirai is to maintain and build on that:
"Our biggest priority is maintaining our share in Japan or increasing it … But getting into the U.S. market requires a lot of resources and marketing, so we have to go one step at a time"
So, if you read between the lines, you could argue it may be some time before we see the Xperia Z1 in the States. If at all. That would be a shame, since the Z1 has a lot going for it, and it's a match for any of the high-end Android devices out there right now. But Sony wants to keep making money, so perhaps it makes sense for them to hold off on trying to crack America for now.