Could Apple be using Japan Display’s new 5.5-inch Quad HD panel in the iPhone 6?

By Cody Lee on Mar 28, 2014

Apple is currently putting the finishing touches on its next-generation iPhone. And if the flurry of rumors and so-called insider reports are to be believed, the handset is going to feature an Ultra Retina display that will come in two sizes: 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch, among other improvements.

With that in mind, you can understand why this new 5.5-inch panel from Japan Display—a long time Apple supplier—is so interesting to us. Unveiled this week, the panel measures 5.5-inches and is of the Quad HD (aka WQHD) variety, with a resolution of 1,440 x 2,560 and a ppi of 538… Read More


Nikkei: Apple to launch 4.7 and 5.5-inch iPhone as early as September

By Cody Lee on Mar 27, 2014

Japanese news outlet Nikkei threw its weight behind a popular rumor today, reporting that Apple’s next-gen iPhone will come in both 4.7- and 5.5-inch models. The theory that the company is working on two new larger-sized handsets has been reiterated several times over the past 6 months.

Citing sources within Apple’s supply chain, Nikkei says that manufacturers have already begun making components for the new smartphones, like fingerprint sensors and chips for liquid-crystal drivers, and Sharp, Japan Display and LG will begin mass-producing their panels as early as April… Read More


SoftBank CEO tells how he landed the iPhone in 2008

By Cody Lee on Mar 13, 2014

During a television interview with Charlie Rose that aired this week, SoftBank’s CEO Masayoshi Son told an interesting story of how he landed the iPhone in 2008. Apparently Son met with Steve Jobs two years before Apple launched the infamous handset to discuss…smartphones.

Son told Rose that he arranged a meeting with Jobs solely to show him a crude sketch of an iPod with mobile capabilities. Obviously, since the iPhone project was already well underway, Jobs didn’t need the drawing, but the meeting still spawned a relationship between the two… Read More


Two-step Apple ID authentication launches in Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Italy and Spain

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 20, 2014

Following a flurry of reports which criticized various security holes allowing hackers to break into people’s Apple ID accounts, Apple in March of 2013 finally stepped up account security by rolling out two-step verification for Apple IDs in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Ireland and New Zealand.

Two months later, the feature launched in nearly a dozen additional countries: Austria, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Mexico, Netherlands, Pakistan, Poland and Russia.

And now, as part of the third wave of expansion, the firm is enabling stronger account security for Apple ID users located in Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Italy and Spain… Read More


Apple discounts iPhones, iPads and more in Lunar New Year Sale

By Cody Lee on Jan 9, 2014

As promised, Apple kicked its ‘Red Friday’ sales event off today in several Asian countries to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Unlike the recent Black Friday event it held here in the US, Apple is offering cash discounts on its products—not gift cards.

Also different is the fact that the Red Friday promotion includes price cuts on all current iPhone models and the new Retina iPad mini. Apple doesn’t usually discount its handsets, as they are extremely popular and provide (by far) the largest margins… Read More


Apple’s Lucky Bags promotion goes live in Japan

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 2, 2014

As announced a week ago, Apple today kicked off its Lucky Bags promotion in Japan. The 36,000 yen (approximately $345 USD) mystery bags filled with randomly picked Apple products and third-party accessories are being offered today only to customers in select Apple retail stores across the 128 million people country.

Also known as Fukubukuro, or Mystery Bags, Japan’s annual New Year’s Day tradition entices shopper with grab bags containing unknown contents. Although buyers can’t tell what they’re actually getting until they look inside, these mystery bags contain a selection of products worth more than the value of the Lucky Bag.

Here’s what fans in Japan are finding in their Lucky Bags from Apple… Read More


Apple to kick off annual ‘Lucky Bag’ one-day sale in Japan on January 2

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 26, 2013

Apple has confirmed that its retail stores in Japan will be kicking off the holiday ‘Lucky Bag’ promotion next Thursday, January 2, 2014. The country’s annual sales event is something of a local tradition and Apple has made sure to delight its loyal fans with mystery bags filled with randomly picked products.

These bags are discounted so the customer typically ends up paying less than the total combined value of the included goods. The trick is that shoppers can’t really tell what’s inside a bag until they have bought it… Read More


Google updates Search iOS app with support for French, German and Japanese

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 5, 2013

Google issued a major mid-August update to its free Search app for the iPhone and iPad with new Google Now cards for flights, reservations, package delivery information and more.

And last month, the firm followed up with another sweet update that implemented ‘OK Google’ hands-free voice control functionality, support for single sign-on, reminders, alerts for delayed flights and upcoming appointments/events and other perks.

This afternoon, the Internet giant pushed a minor update which expands international support to three new languages: French, German and Japanese… Read More


In Japan, iPhone 5s/5c outsold other smartphones by 3:1 during October

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 27, 2013

The new iPhones are on fire in Japan! We already know Apple’s smartphone share in the 127 million people country is bigger than that in the United States as the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c seemingly break sales records in one of the most competitive tech markets on the planet.

Counterpoint Research gave the iPhone a cool 34 percent share of Japan’s smartphone market during the month of October, with Kantar giving Apple a slight lead over Android in Japan.

But according to Kantar’s latest revised data, the iPhone maker has grabbed more than three-quarters of new smartphone sales last month in the Land of the Rising Sun… Read More


Japan’s NTT DoCoMo to land iPad Air real soon

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 26, 2013

NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s top wireless carrier with about sixty million subscribers, accounts for more than half of that country’s market for cell phones. Apple products – the iPhone in particular – are tremendously popular with the Japanese so fans will be delighted to learn that NTT will soon open sales for Apple’s new iPad Air.

The confirmation came via a senior DoCoMo executive who said in Tokyo that his company will start carrying the iPad Air “in the not-too-distant future”. I guess you could say the development’s been in the cards ever since Apple announced an iPhone distribution agreement with the carrier in September… Read More


iPhone market share is bigger in Japan than it is in the US

By Sébastien Page on Nov 11, 2013

According to market survey, Apple has a slightly bigger market share for iPhone in Japan than it does in the US, as the WSJ reports:

Even before that, the iPhone was Japan’s best-selling smartphone, with a 37% market share in the six months ended Sept. 30, according to Tokyo’s MM Research Institute. That’s comparable to the iPhone’s 36% share in the U.S. in the third quarter, according to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.

The market share in Japan is also expected to grow a bit due to the fact that carrier NTT DoCoMo started offering the iPhone for the first time in late September. Read More


iPhone captures one-third of smartphone market in Japan

By Ed Sutherland on Oct 29, 2013

Apple is having great success in Japan. Not only is the iPhone maker surviving one of the most competitive tech markets on the planet, but breaking sales records. The company’s smartphone now has 34 percent of the country’s market, new research shows.

The figure – more than double that of just months ago – shatters a sales record that’s stood for ten years. Apple’s success in Japan even overshadows the world’s largest market, China… Read More


NTT DoCoMo hurt by iPhone wait, iPhone 5c too pricey for India’s prepaid market

By Ed Sutherland on Oct 7, 2013

Did Japan’s largest carrier wait too long to offer the iPhone? That’s the impression after NTT DoCoMo lost a record 66,800 net users in September, dropping its market share to 46 percent. By comparison, KDDI and SoftBank, which sold iPhones soon after its 2007 introduction, gained ground adding 270,700 and 237,700 users respectively.

DoCoMo blamed customer loss on inventory shortages and consumers who waited until Apple’s iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c September 20 sale date. Hoping to regain some momentum, the nation’s largest carrier announced opening online sales of the iPhone 5s to all customers. Meanwhile, in India things have gotten a little tricky for Apple’s $100 cheaper colorful iPhone 5c… Read More


iPhone boosts T-Mobile sales, overtakes Android in Japan

By Ed Sutherland on Oct 1, 2013

The iPhone has fueled smartphone sales by Apple’s latest U.S. carrier partner, Deutsche Telekom-owned T-Mobile USA. In the three-month period ended in August, the service provider saw its share of domestic smartphone sales jump to 13.2 percent, up 1 percent.

According to a report released Monday, the carrier began in April attracting owners of feature phones upgrading to smartphones. Now, however, 56 percent of consumers buying an iPhone from T-Mobile are coming from another smartphone. Indeed, more than 38 percent of T-Mobile’s smartphone purchasers previously owned Android handsets… Read More


Japan court rules Apple’s click wheel infringes patent

By Ed Sutherland on Sep 26, 2013

Apple must pay a Japanese inventor Y300 million (about $3 million USD) for patent infringement involving the iPod’s Click Wheel, a court ordered Thursday. The inventor had asked for Y10 billion, but received far less from the court. The provisional ruling, based on sales dating back to 2004, ends a legal dispute which began in 2007… Read More


Apple announces new iPhone partnership with Japan’s DoCoMo

By Cody Lee on Sep 10, 2013

Although it wasn’t mentioned at the iPhone event, Apple announced today that it has partnered up with Japan’s NTT DoCoMo to offer the iPhone this fall. The company just issued a press release confirming the deal with the carrier.

DoCoMo was the last major provider in the country to not offer Apple’s popular handset, after years of failed negotiations. But it appears someone gave in, because the carrier will be selling both new iPhones on September 20th… Read More


Japanese carrier DoCoMo to start carrying the iPhone this fall

By Cody Lee on Sep 5, 2013

After years of negotiations, it looks like Apple and DoCoMo have finally reached an iPhone deal. Reuters is reporting this afternoon that the company will join KDDI Corp and SoftBank Corp this fall as the last major Japanese carrier to offer the popular smartphone.

The news comes just a few weeks after Bloomberg ran a report claiming that DoCoMo was ready to consider carrying the iPhone, as long as Apple was willing to concede to a few demands, such as allowing it to preload custom apps. So the question is, who gave in? Read More


Bloomberg: Japan’s largest carrier wants iPhone 5S, iPhone 5C – but with strings

By Ed Sutherland on Aug 26, 2013

A new report gives a bit more hope to Apple’s push to widen its base of iPhone global carrier partners. The finance head of Japan’s largest carrier NTT DoCoMo hints Apple’s upcoming colorized iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C models could be sold in this tech-obsessed nation to its customers. However, if Apple wants this plum, it may have to play second fiddle to its Android rival, Samsung.

Although most recent attention has been on China, NTT DoCoMo is the lone hold-out in Japan, making the iPhone sold by every major Japanese carrier. In September, Apple is expected to unveil its next-generation iPhone 5S and possibly the budget-minded iPhone 5C in September… Read More


iPhone 5S and 5C said to be launching in Japan on September 20

By Cody Lee on Aug 20, 2013

The iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C will launch in Japan on September 20, according to a report from prominent Japanese business newspaper Nikkei. That falls on a Friday, 10 days after the handsets are expected to be unveiled.

The date makes sense, based on Apple’s past history. The company typically launches its new iPhones in the United States and a handful of international markets on the Friday of the following week after they’re announced… Read More


Report claiming that Nexus 7 outsold iPad mini in Japan found misleading

By Cody Lee on Jul 30, 2013

In January of this year, market research firm BCN posted a report claiming that the Nexus 7 outsold the iPad mini in Japan during the holidays. Google’s tablet accounted for 44.4% of all tablets sold in the study’s 2,400 stores during the period, besting Apple (40.1% ) for the first time.

Fast forward to last week, when Google unveiled the new Nexus 7. Google’s SVP, and leader of the Android team, Sundar Pichai, took the stage and began rattling off statistics about the platform. And of course he referred to the BCN report, which we have since learned is very misleading… Read More

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