J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan

Issue No. 112
Thursday, August 28, 2003
(Long URLs may break across two lines, so copy to your browser.)

Name: I-O Data LCD-A172VWH
Category: LCD display
Price: Less than 50,000 yen
Release date in Japan: end August 2003

The Gist: The LCD-A172VWH is an SXGA (1,280x1,024)LCD display, and I'm
sure you've all been crying out for another one of those. But this one
is going to hit stores at only 40,000 yen! Or thereabouts, since the
manufacturer reckons retail will discount heavily from its suggested
50,000 yen price tag. But the really good part is that I-O Data's new
panel actually has a name that makes sense, and they go to some
lengths to explain the name: LCD-A172VWH is so called because it's an
LCD panel, has an analog input (that's the A), is a 17-inch display
(the 17), is model 2V (OK, that's slightly dodgier ground, but stick
with us) and the surrounding casing is white (the WH). So the same
machine with a black casing is called the "LCD-A172VBK." How good is

But if you feel the need to get all techy, here are some useful
imaging facts. The LCD-A172VWH/BK display produces 16 million colors,
brightness of 250 candelas, a 20ms response time and a contrast ratio
of 430:1. It has a viewing angle of 150 in all planes, stereo
speakers, max power consumption of 48W (min 2W) and weighs just 5kg.
So not much use as an emergency set of dumbbells. But damn, is it

More info:

============================= EVENT ==================================

Date: Sept. 19, 2003
Location: JETRO BSC Hall, Akasaka Twin Tower Main Building
Organized by: LINC Media Inc., Japan Inc. Communications KK
(publisher of J@pan Inc magazine) and the Shizuoka
Prefectural Government. We are pleased to present the second
of our ongoing program of cost-cutting seminars for foreign
managers. Our keynote speaker is Mr. Andrew Fried, a
partner with IBM Business Consulting (previously PwC).

View complete Seminar information at:
Registration fee: free of charge

Name: Toshiba gigabeat G20
Category: Portable Audio
Price: Open (but approx 50,000 yen)
Release date in Japan: early October 2003

The Gist: The portable audio market is getting pretty saturated now,
but no company seems to have really been able to come up with anything
to seriously rival Apple's fashion-victim friendly iPod range. Apple
is a master of fusing form and function, producing beautifully
designed kit that is (usually) almost idiot proof to work. But some of
the bigger, more aesthetically challenged companies are fighting back
and, with the 20GB gigabeat G20, Toshiba may well be able to put a
dent in Apple's portable-audio near-monopoly.

A slim-line study in silver and using the same Linux OS as its 5-gig
predecessor, the gigabeat G20 is as good looking as the iPod range
(arguably better, if you don't like your gadgets to look like kitchen
appliances), is nice and small at 76.5x89.5x12.7mm and weighs 138g.
This makes the gigabeat G20 the world's thinnest, lightest and
generally smallest (only 87cc, volume fans!) audio player with a
built-in 1.8-inch hard drive. Go on, argue with that.

I can assure you, just in case you're inclined to argue, that this
does, in fact, make the gigabeat G20 considerably smaller than a
Japanese passport. No, really. With a 160x86-dot backlit LCD display
and a rechargeable lithium ion battery that gives you around 11 hours
playback time, the gigabeat G20 comes with a recharging stand just
like a PDA (unlike the sparsely furnished iPod) and connects to your
computer via the brand spanking new, superduper USB 2.0.

Helpfully, and just so you know, Toshiba even provides a comparison
with its similarly-priced competing iPod and says its gigabeat G20 has
a 25 percent larger hard drive (at 20 gigs, compared with the iPod's
15), is 20g lighter and plays back for three hours longer on a single
charge. Which kinda begs the question, "Why, given that it connects
via USB, didn't Tosh also mention you could use it with a Mac?" Hmmm.

More info:

=========================== EVENT ==================================
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:

SAVE 20% for delegates who register by August 29.

Name: Hitachi Global Storage Technologies Microdrive 3K4-4
Category: Storage Media
Price: around 50,000 yen
Release date in Japan: from November 2003

The Gist: Having announced to the gaping, awestruck world of techies
in January this year that they could do it, Hitachi has now revealed
that its massive, 4GB Microdrive storage wotsit will be going into
mass production from November. Produced on an OEM basis (meaning
"Other enterprises market them for us" - OK, actually meaning original
equipment manufacturer), the Microdrive 3K4-4 supercedes the already
elephantine two-gigabyte 3K4-2 to officially become the biggest
smallest widget in the world (trademark pending). Arriving in a Type
II Compact Flash form, the Microdrive will take advantage of
Multi-word DMA (Direct Memory Access) Mode 1 to achieve a data
transfer rate of 13MB a second and Ultra DMA mode 2 at 33MB a second.
That's the plan, anyway.

More info:

===============================EVENT =================================
The Entrepreneur Association of Tokyo - Our September seminar will
feature Caroline Pover founder of Alexandra Press, Being A Broad,
and Go Girls, and Yuriko Miyazaki founder of Krene Inc and vice
president of Go Girls. They will be sharing their experiences on
starting businesses in Japan and how they overcame the obstacles that
stood in their way.

Date: Tuesday September 9th, City Club of Tokyo Maple Room
(Canadian Embassy Complex) Language English E-mail:
Theta Music Technologies is now interviewing for full and part-time
positions in software development. We are building several large music
distribution systems as well as various mobile music apps for all of
the major platforms. This is a particularly good opportunity for
software developers with an interest in music or mobile applications.
We are looking mainly for developers with Java experience,
particularly servlets and J2ME or DoJa. Japanese ability and database
experience are also a plus, but not required. Please contact Steve
Myers ( at 03-3499-3020 for more information.
Subscribers: 4,189 as of August 28, 2003

Written by: Max Everingham (
Edited by: J@pan Inc editors (

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