Posts tagged ‘iphone’

Fasten on the Chocolate

Lately, I’ve been reading about some odd chocolate pairings with sea salt, bacon and even wasabi. But how about chocolate with a touch of cubic zirconia?:

I’m drooling over my keyboard just looking at this picture — the perfect combination of cute and addicting. \(^o^)/

Former fashion model Tadaaki Wakamatsu began creating these mouthwatering jewelry pieces back in 2000 just to keep people smiling through the Y2K economic slump. His company, Q-pot, has since surfaced in high-fashion boutiques and department stores. It sounds strange to mesh food with fashion, but in the land of talking peanuts does it really seem so far-fetched?:

iPhone Chocolate Bar Case

Biscuit keychain

Strawberry cake pendant

Q-pot has been making blogosphere headlines through their fanciful collaborations with Disney, French sweets company Fauchon and Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland.” Who would’ve thought that fashion-form desserts would be such a lucrative business. Just shows that anything is possible!

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

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May 26, 2010 at 4:35 pm Leave a comment

The Japanese iPhone Apps: What’s out there?

Of course, the Apps Store is the best part. Everyday I’m searching for applications that’ll hopefully blow my mind, whether it’s useful tools or wacky games I can play on the toilet.
The one thing I’ve found is that the U.S.-born apps outnumber the Japanese ones. That’s because not as many people in Japan have an iPhone. Unlike here, Apple has tough competition in Japan. So when it comes to making apps, they’re not necessarily made for the iPhone. But that just makes me want to seek out those few cool Japanese apps even more!

Here are some of the more interesting ones:

Amamiya Momo ($2.99)

Meet Momo, a girl dressed in a cat outfit who lives inside your iPhone. You can poke her cheek, pat her head and even lift her skirt. Momo comes with 200 pre-programmed behavior patterns, so depending on how you treat her she can turn from happy to angry very quickly. Apparently, her mood changes depending on the time of day, so watch out!

iBBQLite (free trial)

The object of this game is to cook meat on the grill and hand it to customers. If it’s overcooked they’ll say in Japanese, “Ugh, this is awful!” If it’s undercooked, they’ll say, “What the heck is this!” So be sure to grill it just right. It’s a simple game but oh so addicting.

Harlequin novels (free trial)

There’s now a handful of romance-filled manga series at the disposal of your fingertips. Just do a keyword search for “harlequin” and out comes English-translated stories of love and heartbreak. The first chapter is free, but once they grab your attention you’ll have to pay to read the rest.

LadioTouch (free)

Now you can listen to Japanese radio! Up until now it’s been pretty limited to anime songs, but the range of genres have slowly widened. With this app I can now listen to one of Tokyo’s most popular stations, J-Wave, along with hundreds of other internet radio stations. Unfortunately, the listing is mostly in Japanese.

So what’s your favorite iPhone application? Let me know!

November 24, 2009 at 4:21 pm 1 comment

A Guilt-Free Phone

My cell phone is beeping to its demise and I can’t recharge it! I usually don’t keep my charger on me, so when I’m low on batteries I pray to the cellular gods to keep my phone running ’til at least sundown.

Wish I was in Japan. Then I’d get a Solar Phone SH002 by Sharp. It’s the first of its kind, recharging the battery under the sun so that you can wander for days in the desert and keep in touch with your BFF.

solar_phone_au

For every 10 minutes of golden rays, you get one minute of talk-time or 2 hours on standby, which isn’t bad if you’re the type who spends lots of time outdoors. Vampires be warned.
p_index_image_01
In true Japanese fashion, you get a nice array of colors to choose from: sky blue, prism white, and sparkling red. And as an added bonus, the phone is also waterproof (!?) — though water-boarding isn’t encouraged.

Compared to the iPhone, it doesn’t come with many apps but the ones that it does have will come in handy for sporty types: a pedometer and a tool to measure your golfing performance. I love the iPhone for its limitless vault of apps, but I also love this phone for its sheer ecological value. Maybe one of these days, the two will have offspring! \(^o^)/

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
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July 28, 2009 at 11:25 am Leave a comment

iPhone: Don’t Believe the Hype?

My brother was one of the thousands to get an iPhone when it came out on July 11. He lives in the sticks of southern Kyushu so all he did was glide into the store and lay down the cash. It was a breeze compared to Tokyo. When it comes to cell phones, Japan is a bountiful candy store. Even so, he and every other tech geek was itching to get this new American idol. It’s sleek, comes with a multi-touch display, and if Americans were lining up for it then, goddamnit, so should they.

Soon after bringing home his new toy he realized things were amiss. For one, both phone and 3G Wi-Fi signal were spotty. Granted, rice fields outnumber cell phone towers in the area, but then again he’s never had problems with previous phone carriers.

And when he finally started texting friends, it never went through. iPhone carrier Softbank (no, not a bank) created exclusive email addresses for their customers (@i.softbank.jp). But they’re so exclusive that other cellphones are unable to recognize it, so they’re filtered out. My brother fell completely out of the loop with friends. Like many young people today, he prefers to text than call. Must’ve been like being the only kid benched on the playground.

There’s other drawbacks with this new phone: not being able to use cute emoticons integral for playful conversation; having to use both hands to operate the thing; and not having a loophole built in for charms. These all might seem trivial to most Americans. But believe me, for Japanese school girls it’s like removing oxygen from the atmosphere. I nearly died after coming back to the U.S. and realizing I couldn’t string in my Hello Kitty plushie to my clunky Nokia.

So obviously the brains behind the 3G iPhone were drinking on the job when they decided to approve the phone for the Japanese market. But the question remains: Why would thousands of people line up for hours, or in some cases days, to purchase an obviously flawed product? My guess is that they were simply attracted to iPhone’s unique touch screen. That’s something completely new to them. But $200 for something you can press your greasy fingers against? Silly, if you ask me. Then again, this is a country that eats bread topped with corn and mayonnaise. Silly is the norm.

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
JPBizDirect, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more
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August 5, 2008 at 10:04 am Leave a comment

Tricks Aren’t Just for Kids

emember that thumb-separating trick you did when you were a kid? If you tried it today, your friends would probably kick you in the crotch (Am I the only one with violent friends?). But do it in Japan and you might actually get people OOH-ing and AHH-ing in amazement.

Quick, visual gags go a long way in Japan. And now they’ve gone high-tech. Imagine yourself coaxed into going to the beer garden with the boss after work. You’re a 21-year-old new recruit and he’s a grumbling 65-year-old with whom you have nothing in common. You have no idea what to talk to him about. So what do you do? Take out your iPhone and entertain him this:

It’s called iBeer and it’s one of many silly applications created for Apple’s iPod/iPhone line. When my brother in Japan told me how happy he was to finally get his iTouch last October (iPhone is set for release on July 11), I knew it was the start of a new trend. He quickly downloaded iBeer and started showing his friends how many he could chug without getting drunk. And then came others: iBug (a potato beetle runs around your screen), iWash (a bikini girl squeegees your screen), iWater (you get the idea), iPopcorn, iX-ray…

Then recently a Japanese guy created iPong:

I’m assuming it’s not just a visual trick and that it’s using the Touch’s built-in Wi-Fi to bounce around all three screens. The application’s creator, Kondo-san, only programmed for one ball to be used, but in the future he’ll offer more balls to create havoc on the screen. It looks like fun and opens the mind to other possibilities with this kind of technology.

Americans might underestimate the demand for utterly inane forms of entertainment like this in Japan. But believe me, whether you’re out with coworkers or new friends, mindless distractions are a necessary form of social lubrication. Very seldom are Japanese (that I know at least) keen on getting into impassioned talks about personal views. Unless you really know the person you keep the conversation light. Very light. So after exhausting all discussion points on today’s weather, what do you do? Take out your iPod of course, and have a beer! (^_^)/

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
JPBizDirect, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more
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June 24, 2008 at 10:50 am Leave a comment


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