GW-123

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J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
G A D G E T W A T C H
The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
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Issue No. 123

Thursday, November 13, 2003
(Long URLs may break across two lines, so copy to your browser.)

============================ CONFERENCE ==============================
Join Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft and other speakers from the very
highest levels of both government and business.

SEVENTH ROUNDTABLE WITH THE GOVERNMENT OF JAPAN
Industry and government in partnership towards a revitalised Japan
November 18th 2003, Tokyo

A special 10% discount is applicable for J@pan Inc readers.
Simply quote "E3D" to receive your discount. Register online at:
http://www2.economistconferences.com/doc/ap/jpgrt03/r.htm
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Name: Marubeni Infotech NMP-612T
Category: Portable audio
Price: 28,000 yen
Release date in Japan: early December 2003

The Gist: The "D Cube" portable digital audio player from Marubeni
incorporates an "FM Transmitter" from Korean manufacturer Nextway and
has -- get this -- "karaoke functionality." I don't know about you,
but I've always wanted to spend my mornings making a total idiot of
myself warbling away karaoke-style on a train full of Japanese
commuters. And now, thanks to these guys, the dream has become a
reality. More importantly, with the ability of the D Cube to transmit
sounds as FM radio waves, users can zap the D Cube's toons across and
listen to them via their car stereos or FM radios -- wirelessly! The
integral mike (allowing the unit to double -- nay treble -- as a
digital voice recorder) and a mixing function also allow users to
indulge in a spot of impromptu karaoke, if they so wish.

The NMP-612T slots neatly into a USB socket on your PC or laptop, has
MP3, WMA, ASF and TVF file playback capability, 256MB of internal
Flash RAM and weighs only 47g. And it looks very cool. White. Cool
white. Like ice. Er, I'll get my coat...

More info: http://www.m-infotec.co.jp/news/031105_02.shtml

============================= EVENT ==================================
GARTNER'S SYMPOSIUM/ITXPO 2003
Date: Nov. 19-21, 2003
Location: Le Meridien Grand Pacific (Odaiba, Tokyo)

Business today is all about reducing time, increasing speed, and
improving profits. Technology is the enabler.
Keeping up - and looking ahead - is your challenge and our strength.
Join over 2500 senior IT decision makers to hear Gartner's leading
global and Japanese analyst address technology issues that will
have the biggest impact on your enterprise over the next year.

View complete Symposium information at:
http://www.gartner.co.jp/symposium/eng/
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Name: Sun Denshi FMTM-101
Category: Portable a
Price: 5,980 yen
Release date in Japan: December 5, 2003

The Gist: And talking of smart white stuff with FM capabilities
designed to capitalize on the aesthetic sensibilities of iPod devotees
the world over, please welcome Sun's FMTM-101. At almost twice the
weight of Nextway's audio player in the last snippet, the FMTM-101 is
an FM radio transmitter specifically designed to match your cute
widdle white iPod. Ahhhhh...

But the great thing about the 101 is that it connects via the
mini-jack audio output of your iPod and can transmit your tunes via FM
radio waves to -- oh, hang on, this sounds very familiar -- Yes! It
does exactly the same thing as the Marubeni Infotech/Nextway NMP-612T
portable audio player! And it's not an audio player! But it's cheaper!
Capable of transmitting on 88.2, 88.6 and 89MHz, all users need to do
is tune their car radio to one of those frequencies and voila! You can
listen to your sounds in the car without messing around with wires and
so forth. Oh, and, if there's been no sound for 30 or 40 seconds, the
unit automatically switches itself off.

More info: http://www.sun-denshi.co.jp/

============================ IT PROGRAM ==============================
Temple University Japan presents "The Temple IT Program".
Certification in two key IT areas: Computer Programming and Software
Systems Development.
Study to get a great job in IT, retrain to improve your career in IT,
assess and raise IT staff technical skills. Courses based on
leading-edge course content from iCarnegie (Carnegie Mellon
University).
More info: http://www.tuj.ac.jp/itp/newsad.html
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Name: Ratoc Systems' REX-Link1
Category: Audio
Price: 16,500 yen
Release date in Japan: early December 2003

The Gist: Japan's clearly gone a bit wireless-mad recently. Sticking
with the transmitter theme this week, the REX-Link1 is a 2.4GHz
digital wireless USB audio transmitter, working with almost all the
new Windows operating systems and newer Macs. It transmits across a
space of up to 10 meters. All you have to do is whack the little USB
transmitter thingy into the slot in your computer, and it'll zing over
the music goodness from said computer to the color-matched (ideal if
your name is Santa Claus) receiver unit. The receiver unit, in turn,
connects to whatever kit you want to use to output the audio: 5.1 home
theater speaker setups (it's compatible with Dolby Digital 5.1), a
combi system, whatever.

More info: http://www.ratocsystems.com/info/news/2003/1107_2.html

=============== J@PAN INC. COST CUTTING SEMINAR ===================
November's keynote speaker is Mr. Dhananjaya "Jay" Dvivedi,
the CIO of Shinsei Bank. Jay has played a key part in helping
to turn around Shinsei and make it one of the most profitable
in Japan. As an insider, he will cover the challenges, solutions,
and some vignettes about cost-cutting and transforming a
Japanese company into an international one.

Date/time: November 21, 2003 (Friday), 14:00-16:00
Venue: Ran Room, Imperial Hotel
Charge: Free (sponsored by Ibaraki Pref. Govt.)
For more details: see http://japaninc.net/ibaraki, or contact
yukiko.hosoya@japaninc.com.
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Name: Sony PCVA-HVP20
Category: Portable video player
Price: Open (but approx. 50,000 yen)
Release date in Japan: November 20, 2003

The Gist: The charmingly monikered PCVA-HVP20 is a very sleek-looking
portable video player with a 20GB internal hard drive. To get the most
out of it, Sony says, you'll need a Vaio laptop (also, coincidentally,
made by Sony) running Windows ME, XP or 2000. But then they would say
that, eh?

Anyhow, the little player has a bright, 3.5-inch TFT LCD color display
on which proud new owners will be able to view the movies and TV
programs they've just recorded using said trusty Vaio laptop computer,
simply by transferring them across via speedy USB2.0. The machine
handles both MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 playback formats in addition to Sony's
proprietary "Giga Pocket" files and will also cope with AVI and WMA
stuff. The 20-gig hard disk will squeeze 31 minutes of 1.41Mpbs of
MPEG-1 data, the lithium ion battery will go for four hours before
needing a recharge, and its vital statistics are 84ラ120ラ28mm and 300g.
Definitely one for the eager-to-impress road warrior types. Sony
doesn't actually say if the machine's any use if you don't own a Vaio,
however.

More info: http://www.ecat.sony.co.jp/vaio/acc/acc.cfm?pd=15849

=================== PAN PACIFIC LEISURE PACKAGE =====================
At Pan Pacific Yokohama, you can have a relaxing experience
for only 20,000 yen per night, including an American breakfast.
For details, please check http://yokohama.panpacific.com/
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============================= EVENT ==================================
ICA November 20 Event

PRESENTER: Stefan Hanna, Director of Services, Nippon Ericsson
TOPIC: Development and implementation of new business
services for mobile telephones

RSVP required, complete event details at http://www.icajapan.jp/
Date: Thursday, Nov 20
Time: 6:30 Doors open, sit down dinner included
Cost: 3,000 yen (members), 5,500 yen (non-members)
Foreign Correspondents' Club
http://www.fccj.or.jp/static/aboutus/map.php
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Subscribers: 4,619 as of November 13, 2003

STAFF
Written by: Max Everingham (max@everingham.net)
Edited by: J@pan Inc editors (editors@japaninc.com)

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