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KDDI to sell new iPhone in Japan, ending Softbank's domination

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I will first start by saying @smithinjapan, Apple never in way suggested there would be a new phone. They never talked about it..It was the tech and blogsphere that made the whole thing up. We ourselves are the ones to blame for the no 5 behind the word iPhone...So what did you expect. It has everything that people wanted or expected in tech...so what's the letdown..?

I think this is a breakthrough phone and apple is going to destroy with it..they care about their users but more than that. They care about their business strategy. They aren't going to just give away their next technology to other companies after they have worked so hard...So I think they are learning, and the next update in a few years will certainly take the cake.

i would buy apple before andriod any day.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

No tethering support? If you run a tethering app on the iphone with softbank they quietly throttle your bandwidth if u use too much data. I don't like being carrier locked when paying so much money for the phone, either.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

good news for TEPCO...they own about 8% of KDDI!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

It's too early for iPhone 5 to come out, Apple has to wait until Android releases some more new features to steal. Oh, I mean make "revolutionary."

2 ( +5 / -3 )

badmigraine: "I wouldn't hold my breath for any price plan wars or carrier-unlocked iPhones from these two providers. By gentleman's agreement, pricing will stay the same."

Don't you absolutely hate how companies to that here (more than elsewhere)? The fact that they mutually agree to screw over customers when they could have good competition that benefits everyone is a joke.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

smithinjapan, so true. I remember when I first came here long ago. All newspapers were the exact same 120 yen. It amazed me. Then, item by item, I found out much of the country works this way and most people have internalized it so deeply that they can't even make out what you're trying to say when you question it.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What the hell happened to iPhone 5??

1 ( +3 / -2 )

littlebear: First, while you may be correct that Apple did not officially say they were coming out with an iPhone 5 model, it wasn't just the tech and bloggosphere that were winding everyone up; major media carried the stories as well, even just this week saying the launch of iPhone 5 was coming soon with the speech by Apple.

Anyway, I LOVE Apple products and use nothing but where possible. I'll probably end up getting the iPhone 4S because the contract for my current iPhone 3g is about to end and I want a new one, but NOW people are talking about a 5 coming out in spring. Hmmmm... what to believe, and what to do.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The hardware in any fairly recent smartphone is plenty good enough. I'd just as soon have an Android or Windows phone as an Apple one, and more likely, try a different one every time. But the dealmaker for me is this: if you have a US credit card billing address, then all media in the US iTunes store is available even though you are physically located in Japan. All the recent TV shows, all the movies.

I can't find any other source for this in Japan. Netflix and Amazon won't allow access from IP addresses located outside the US. So if I switch to Android at this point, then I lose access to all my US media. I would never do that. Certainly a lot of the media is crap, but it's nice to have it when I want it. Nothing like getting the whole season 3 of Breaking Bad and eating an entire bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos while watching it.

Other than that, I don't care what OS or platform is on my stinking phone.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Fredster, thanks for the tip. I gave that up. I was using proxy servers for Hulu and other stuff, then they blocked that so I went to VPNs and found the bandwidth/quality issues made it no fun. How well is it working for you?

But that's a computer solution, not for smartphones. Even if I did access Netflix that way, it's a PITA to get it through a VPN, save it to my computer and then resize it for a phone, then move it to the phone, only to find that chapter menus and other features I expected are stripped out or not working right. With iTunes/iPhone, it's all a one-click solution.

If I were in the US, I wouldn't care. I'd probably have some Android phone and get my media another way. Probably my phone would even have a slide-out keyboard!

I used to be all about Linux distros, terminal commands, FOSS. I hated any walled garden--especially Apple's. Now look what happened. I had a kid, and another, and another, and the fourth is on the way. Most days, I have trouble getting free to even use the bathroom. I have no time for computer hobby hacking or geek-tweaking or circumventing restrictions anymore, and can't believe how much time I used to spend on it for very little benefit. In fact I found I was the guy asked to fix everyone else's PC problems. No I just want a one-click solution and to get back to my life!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

smithinjapan

badmigraine: "I wouldn't hold my breath for any price plan wars or carrier-unlocked iPhones from these two providers. By gentleman's agreement, pricing will stay the same."

Don't you absolutely hate how companies to that here (more than elsewhere)? The fact that they mutually agree to screw over customers when they could have good competition that benefits everyone is a joke.

This is called price fixing and is illegal, got any evidence and can you prove it is happening/will be happening?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Are the rights to iPhone 5 up for grabs as well? i.e. is Softbank's exclusive hold on iPhone distribution over?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The "5" is coming in the spring of 2012.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

KDDI shares lost 0.71% to 554,000 yen against 624,000 on Sept 22.

The phone and Apple rock, but the price of these KDDI shares is absolutely absurd. This is the reason why only the rich can play the market here in Japan for most of it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Iphone 5 will be released later on

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Would be nice if KDDI in the US would offer the iPhone, since they are using Sprint's communication towers. The selection smart phones they offer to their customers is a bit outdated and lousy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Good news.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wouldn't hold my breath for any price plan wars or carrier-unlocked iPhones from these two providers. By gentleman's agreement, pricing will stay the same. Even unlocked iPhones become available in Japan, neither carrier will sell you an unlimited data plan at the price people get when they buy the handset at the same time.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Docomo and galaxy s2 blow this rubbish out of the water why bother with this iphone at all.

0 ( +2 / -1 )

This is not revolutionary. This is just a stepping stone for iPhone 5, just like 3GS was for iPhone 4. So wait for iPhone 5. Regardless, so then......... what was that iPhone that got leaked, I mean, left at the bar again?

Anyways, Apple has to move along their iPhone development cycles a bit faster now that there's real competition from Android. Since Android is used by several phone manufacturers (while the iPhone only has one) and each of which has their own development cycle, the overall development of the Android is moving along at a faster congregated pace (e.g. by the time the iPhone gets an 8MP camera, there's already Android phones beyond that). That's why there are more Android users now than iPhone users. Apple has to keep pace; otherwise, they could end up like how their Mac computers ended with just 10% of the marketplace (Mac users also started out of the gate faster than PC users, but eventually, PC users caught up then left Mac users behind).

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Valmain - I couldn't agree more.

The Apple Zombie-sheep never fail to disappoint.... Why anyone would want to use a device that goes within a million miles of ITunes I will never know.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

iPhone 4S has already been lauded as a dud.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Bluebris, see my comment as to why. I fully agree that iTunes really does stink as software. I couldn't believe how bad it was years ago when I first saw it, and it's gotten no better. But thanks to some international licensing door that Apple and Big Media left open probably by accident, you can get the entire lineup of the US iTunes store here in Japan. Where else can you get that media? Not on Android or Windows phones. Not direct from Netflix or Amazon. My three kids and I consume a lot of this media and no point in giving it up because iTunes software is crappy.

I'm a computer geek and used to play around with Linux versions. I had no love for Apple. But at this point in the game, really, what is the big difference. Now it just seems like a Lacoste shirt vs. a Polo shirt, or Starbucks vs. Tullys. The ecosystem is a big part of it, more than the hardware, and it is all converging anyway.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Finally, competition. Three cheers to KDDI. Hopefully, KDDI has cheaper plan rates than softbank.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Personally I would be very happy to get my wife an AU iPhone4S with 64Gb, then swap her SIM for my softbank one from my iphone4, since I would definately make use of the faster processor and capacity for gaming, whereas she doesn't give a stuff about such things and would barely load 4Gb of music/Apps onto hers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wonder if it is only for new iphones, I can switch my old 3GS or 4 phone to AU now?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's the same iphone 4, nothing special that is why KDDI will get the contract.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Now at least, using Viber, Softbank and AU users who use iphone will be able to talk to each other for free :)

I do wish that Softbank would lower their iPhone subscription rates. Who doesn't? Even though at 6,000ish yen, I still pay less than I ever did for a monthly bill in Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Although, I suppose it won't have a lot of effect on me. I don't think I have a single friend who uses AU. Almost all of them are on Softbank, even the Japanese ones, and there are a scant few who are holding on to Docomo for some reason or other.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Iphone 5 will be coming out later

0 ( +0 / -0 )

please remember than when you compare the iphone to android, you are comparing a type of phone from one company (apple), to that of several different companies using android (samsung, sony, sharp, htc, motorola, etc). so in comparing the sales of just one of those companies, say even the best selling smartphone company, to the sales of apple's iphone, there is no real comparison. iphone blows every one of them out of the water without question. i dont care which phone you decide to use, hopefully its one you like and are happy you bought, but please be careful about how you choose to compare phones.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

badmigrane

Not direct from Netflix....

You sure can using a VPN account... works for me... perhaps google AceVPN....

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

RE locked iPhones-- When I was in the UK over the summer, there were places everywhere advertising to unlock iPhones. I had mine unlocked, and put in a UK SIM card right away to use it there. Came back here and put in my Softbank SIM with no problems at all. A colleague did the same on her trip to Australia. It's one way to get around this locked iPhone monopoly game the companies try to pull here.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

God, thank you choiwaruoyaji! I have an iPhone and mostly apple products, but think Andriod phones are just as great. I'm plain tired of people comparing their android phone to my iPhone and trying to outdo me on features and apps. Yes you have a nice feature, I have one as well, can we move past this.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Isn't it true that the Android soft is subject to Mal Ware?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

same goes for PCs

-2 ( +1 / -2 )

For heaven's sake! They're just silly little devices... who cares if they're Apple or Android.

There's a million more fun and rewarding things to do than waste time with this rubbish.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

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