J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
G A D G E T W A T C H
The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
Issue No. 166
Monday October 25, 2004
(Long URLs may break across two lines, so copy to your browser.)
========= Entrepreneur Association of Tokyo Seminar =========
This November, Kaori Sasaki, CEO & President of ewoman Inc & President
of UNICUL International will present, ewoman's Secret of Success. Don't
miss this great opportunity to hear from one of Japan's leading
entrepreneurs. For more information please visit the EA-Tokyo website.
Name: SolidAlliance SushiDisk
Category: USB Memory
Price: 6,000 yen for 32MB; 8,200 yen for 128MB
Release date in Japan: Already released
The Gist: You like sushi. You like USB memory. Why not combine the two?
SolidAlliance, world-famous creator of the "iDuck" duck-shaped USB memory,
now adds the "SushiDisk" sushi-shaped USB memory to their lineup. And it's
not just "shaped" like sushi; these use actual plastic sushi samples
handmade by "Satou Sample," known throughout Japan for their plastic food
samples. I'm sure readers who are in (or have been to ) Japan know what
I'm referring to -- for the rest of us, "sit-down" Japanese restaurants
typically display plastic samples of all their dishes outside so that
the passer-by can tell at a glance if they have their dish of choice.
This is particularly useful for non-Japanese speakers, because you need
only point at an item in the window to make an order. Getting back to the
memory itself, there are five varieties spread across two different types:
cucumber roll and tuna roll are available in 32MB capacities, and tuna,
sea urchin, and salmon roe are available in 128MB capacities. All use the
USB 2.0 interface.
More info: http://www.solidalliance.com/press/press.html#1018
Name: Yamaha MyRoom
Category: Room within a room
Price: Natural: 438,900 yen, Standard: 522,900 yen, Deluxe: 627,900
Release date in Japan: November 1st, 2004
The Gist: Property costs in Japan are no laughing matter, and as a result,
the typical Japanese house is far smaller than the typical American house
when you look at the cost-per-space ratio. Just to give you an idea, Japan
has one-eighth the land area of the USA, but about half the population.
All this is to say, things are quite cramped. So cramped, in fact, there
is often difficulty in finding private space inside even your own home.
In response to the growing need for privacy in the Japanese home, Yamaha
this week introduced their "MyRoom" series of "private rooms for adults."
Essentially a portable room, the MyRoom has a total area of about 1.5
tatami mats (2.5 square meters for the tatami impaired), and is available
with a variety of options. While all the rooms are equipped with soundproofing,
the "Deluxe" model adds an extra Dr-5 (totaling to Dr-35), for those extra
loud private times. Certainly you could find something to do inside of your
private room; after all, it's equipped with Ethernet, cable, and two phone lines.
More info: http://www.yamaha.co.jp/news/2004/04101801.html
Name: Mobile Housou MBTT0102A
Category: Mobile Broadcast receiver
Price: 9,800 yen
Release date in Japan: December 24th, 2004
The Gist: Mobile Housou Corporation began offering the world's first broadcasts
intended for mobile devices, dubbed the "Moba HO!" service, on October 20th.
Featuring both MPEG-4 video and AAC audio signals, I think it's safe to think
of the broadcasts as "satellite TV for your cell phone." But saying that would
be restrictive of the true potential of the new broadcasts, as the Mobile
Housou Corporation this week introduced the "MBTT0102A" PC card Moba HO! receiver.
Setting up the card is as simple as plugging it in your laptop (or other
compatible mobile device) and installing the software -- also supported is
recording of broadcasts to your laptop's hard drive. Expect to see mobile
broadcasts have applications in a wide variety of devices in the coming years:
laptops, cellular phones, car-based GPS navigation systems, PDAs, and so forth.
Also of note is that All-Nippon Airways (ANA) announced they would be adding
Moba HO! compatible receivers to all domestic flights by the !
second half of 2005.
More info: http://www.mbco.co.jp/05_news/press_archive/041019_01.html
Subscribers: 6,531 as of October 25, 2004
Written by: Liam McNulty
Edited by: Burritt Sabin (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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