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

Issue No. 159
Monday, September 6, 2004
(Long URLs may break across two lines, so copy to your browser.)

========================= EA Event ====================================
Entrepreneur Association of Tokyo: September Seminar

This September, Tokyo entrepreneur Mark Devlin -- CEO and Publisher of
Crisscross KK and Japan Today -- will be presenting, "Metropolis & Japan
Today: Past, Present and Future." Don't miss this great opportunity to
hear how Mark has created Japan's No. 1 English Magazine and the
world's leading source for Japan news.

Date/Time: Tuesday, September 7th 7:00 pm
Location: City Club of Tokyo - Maple Room (Canadian Embassy Complex)
Language: English

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Name: NEC VersaPro VY11F/GL-R
Category: Tablet PC
Price: 307,650 yen
Release date in Japan: Late September, 2004

The Gist: This week, NEC took the wraps off a Tablet PC that should
breathe some new life into an industry that hasn't been performing so
well. I say this because one of the primary complaints about current
Tablet PCs is that they're basically just laptops with support for a

Addressing this, NEC has unveiled a new machine in the "VersaPro" line,
with a weight of about 899 grams and -- get ready -- a maximum thickness
of only 13.7mm. In other words, this system packs a 1.1GHz processor,
512MB of RAM, wireless LAN capabilities, a 20GB hard drive, and Mobility
Radeon 7500 into a space about as high as stack of 11 CDs. Understandbly,
however, you'll need to use an external drive for access to CDs and DVDs.
Certainly a step in the right direction for the Tablet PC market. Now
all they need to do is bring down those prices.

More info:

===================== JOURNALISM INTERNSHIPS ==========================

Japan Inc. magazine is offering a limited number of journalism
internships to qualified individuals. This is a unique opportunity to
acquire hands-on experience in creating the content, developing the
design and shaping the vision of a major, independent business and
tech-oriented monthly English-language publication.

Qualified individuals seeking this opportunity must be Tokyo-based
and fluent in English. (At least some knowledge of the Japanese
language is a significant asset.)

Interested parties should send relevant resumes, samples and contact
information to Maria Deutsch at:

Name: JVC XM-C31
Category: MiniDisc player
Price: Around 21,000 yen
Release date in Japan: October 1, 2004

The Gist: As recent sales statistics reflect, MiniDisc players are
fighting quite a battle with other digital audio players. As most
reading this probably know, MiniDisc has been an established format in
Japan for many years -- but recent offerings (from Apple in particular)
are giving the format a good run for its money. To put some numbers to
the situation, recent estimates indicate digital audio players have a
share of 1,500,000 units, while MiniDisc players have a share of
3,000,000 units.

Just as any war goes, the advantages of each side are being exercised
in an effort to hopefully defeat the enemy. And when we're talking
MiniDisc vs. MP3, MiniDisc's primary advantages would be ease of use,
cheaply available media and battery life.

JVC's newest MiniDisc offering has taken the meaning of "battery life"
to a whole new level. The XM-C31 player has an almost obnoxious maximum
playback time of 318 hours (with the combined use of the internal NiMH
battery, one AA battery and LP4 playback mode). Another feature
reminding us that the Japan MiniDisc isn't entirely dead is the
"Quick Charge" function, which allows for a playback of 15 hours after
a mere 20 minutes of charging.

Beyond the above, you'll likely find this player to be pretty standard
as far as MiniDisc goes.

More info:

======================== Setting up a Company ==========================
Entrepreneur's Handbook Seminar

Terrie Lloyd, founder of over 12 start-up companies in
Japan will be giving an English-language seminar and Q&A on
starting up a company in Japan. This is an ideal
opportunity to find out what is involved, and to ask
specific questions that are not normally answered in
business books. All material is Japan-focused.

Time/date: 10:30am, Saturday, September 11, 2004
Place: 7-8-1 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107
Price: 15,000 yen prepaid, 20,000 yen at the door
Included: Lunchbox, refreshments, handouts

Bookings:, in English or Japanese.

Name: Logitec LAT-CARMP3
Category: Car audio
Price: 8,820 yen
Release date in Japan: Early September, 2004

The Gist: Logitec's new "LAT-CARMP3" is an MP3 player that gets power
from your car's cigarette lighter, plays files from USB memory devices,
and then transmits audio via FM radio. If that process didn't quite make
sense to you the first time you read it, it's pretty simple -- you
download files from your PC onto a USB memory device, plug it into the
MP3 player and take it in your car. Once in your car, you plug it
into your cigarette lighter and MP3s will be transmitted via FM radio.

The next and final step, then, would be to tune your radio to the correct
FM frequency. As with anything these days, there are some limitations
to this device -- up to 512MB USB devices are supported, and up to 200
songs are supported. Those of you who are looking to plug in some
gigantic 200GB hard drive should look elsewhere.

Note: Japan-only "Logitec" should not be confused with the Swiss
"Logitech," known in Japan as "Logicool."

More info:

Subscribers: 6,287 as of September 6, 2004

Written by: Liam McNulty
Edited by: Roland Kelts (

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