Japanese Technology from the Future Friday!

Japanese Technology from the Future Friday! - AkihabaraNews.com

This week we're talking about Japan's role in the iPhone 6's alleged and guessed at and in all ways speculated upon manufacturing delays due to display assembly issues, and then we talk about gambling, booze, and internet addiction and how that last one might be really kinda highly subjective and we're not buying all the Ministry of Health is selling!

• • •

Welcome to Japanese Technology from the Future Friday!
It’s already Friday west of the international dateline – here in Japan, it’s totally the future. The weekly JTFF is our somewhat Technosnarky coverage of 2-5 particularly important, specifically Japan-related tech stories. Get yourself hip to the micro & macro that went down while North America was sleeping – check in with Akihabara News every Friday morning and BOOM! Ahead of the game, you win.

:: JTFF – August 22, 2014 ::

• Japan Display, Inc. Part of iPhone 6’s Reportedly Possible but Nobody Really Knows for Sure Potential Supply Shortage that May or May Not Exist Maybe Kinda
Damn, we humans love to pointlessly speculate on iPhone stuff, don’t we? Well, the JTFF isn’t above doing the same, but at least we have our angle to follow (Japan). And, of course, we too will dork out on the new phone when it’s released. Dismissing that digression, anybody remember Japan Display? We do! The JTFF has been following the Japan Display saga for a few years now, and basically, it was this bold experiment that took the failing display divisions of three tech giants (Sony, Toshiba, and Hitachi) and mashed them together into one independent display-making corporate entity. Surprising many, it turned out rather well: the divisions meshed nicely, profits ensued, the company increased their business with Apple, and earlier this year held a $4 billion IPO. Not bad, not bad at all. But now, according to rumour and insider speculative geekery, along with a handful of other manufacturers, Japan Display was dealt a production setback when Apple realized it was squeezing the iPhone 6 a bit too tight and sacrificing screen brightness. This is a speedbump for Japan Display because it’s also reported that nearly ⅓ of the hybrid company’s revenue comes from Apple, which some analysts see as a bit precarious. But to that we say: “Hmmmmm… well maybe, but Apple does seem to be doing well for itself, and if Japan Display keeps doing well at what it does, then hey - success, yo.”

iPhone News & Coverage

• Japan Loves Booze, Gambling, and the Internets (and might need a 12-step program)
There is a lot of gambling in Japan: Pachinko, which is basically developmentally disabled vertical pinball with prize money, is everywhere. Here in Tokyo where we’re pounding this keyboard - a mostly residential area - there are no fewer than 4 pachinko parlors within a 7-minute walk. Gambling addiction rates are considered high (according to recently released survey). There is a lot of booze in Japan: With considerable signal degradation, if you translate the word “飲み会 / のみかい / no mi kai” into English, you’ll arrive at “drinking party.” It’s want for context, however, because drinking parties are often highly professional outings. It’s standard procedure for companies small and huge, social groups, sports teams, and many other social institutions to have these drinking parties, and unless they’re the DD or have a severe aversion, people are expected to at least have some beer. Bars and booze vendors thrive in Japan, and unless they really, REALLY have a problem, individuals who are habitual, even daily alcohol users are spared the the ‘alcoholic’ label. Alcohol addiction rates are considered high (according to recently released survey). There is a lot of internet in Japan: Internet addiction rates are considered high (according to recently released survey). This is where the rubber data hits the dorky road for us, and it’s something that we have to take issue with - mostly because humans don’t fully know what ‘internet addiction’ means...yet. Does the arithmetic of defining internet addiction factor in time spent online by people whose jobs require it? Or, exactly how often do I have to check my phone in a given hour to be considered addicted? We’re totally hip to the internationally accepted definitions of gambling and alcohol addiction, but internetting is something of a frontier, and nailing down what exactly constitutes addiction isn’t quite so easy, we say. So, this new survey by Japan’s Health Ministry, cited in the piece we’re citing here, would benefit from digging a bit deeper and refraining from using or needing to use speculative terminolgy like “could be” and “seems,” etc. Oh, and if these societal ills are so damn bad, how is it that Japan's is the world's longest-lived population? Oh again, one other thing: Japan's internal social science skills are not exactly...highly regarded. As such, we call for an independent, foreign based investigation of this internet addiction issue. Like the French, maybe. That'd be good.

We’re Not Really Sure What’s Related so Just Look at This Because it’s Cool

That was the JTFF, and live from the future – that is all.

• • •

Tokyo at Night via PhotoEverywhere.


Related Articles

BIG-ASS GALLERY #4 - 2014 Tokyo International Toy Show (HALF-ASSED EDITION)

The Final Big-Ass Gallery of Really Great Photos. Of Toys. 

TokyoStreetView - November 16, 2014

TokyoStreetView: Todoroki Valley (4K VIDEO) - AkihabaraNews.com
An environment unique to Tokyo, Todoroki Valley is a simple walking trail adjacent to the Yazawa River and surrounded by a very dense forest that totally shields it from Kan-Pachi Dori, one of Tokyo’s busiest roads. While the Todoroki Valley’s 1.2 km walking trail is pure bliss, it’s only at the end of the voyage that you can discover yet another hidden wonder: the Todoroki Fudo Temple. Here you can enjoy some delicious mochi (Japanese rice sweets) and ramune (Lemonade), and you have the option to let the gods hear your prayers and wash away your sins.

No More Naruto.
Today, internationally popular Japanese manga NARUTO, which has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine for 15 years, has ended with its 700th episode.

Akihabaranews.com - Japanese Directors - Academy Award

The nominees for the 86th annual Academy Awards were announced yesterday (US time), and we were happy to hear that 2 Japanese animation movies were nominated!

First, of course, from Studio Ghibli…

- The Wind Rises by Hayao Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki, Studio Ghibli for Animated Feature Film

Akihabaranews.com .みんな new gTLD domain

Google has released .みんな - a new domain extension for Japanese who want to carve out their own, new space on the Internet.

.みんな (.minna) literally means "everybody" in Japanese, and is being positioned by Google as an alternate online address space for Japanese.

Unlimited-Terrain RC QuadCopter from Takara Tomy

Well that’s an interesting way to go about it...
Takara Tomy’s made thousands of RC toys over the years, but this is the first in a while that’s really caught our interest: it really is a go-anywhere ride.

Transform XBA to Bluetooth
is going to release an interchangeable cable unit MUC-M1BT1 that makes Sony's XBA series wired, in-ear headphones Bluetooth compliant.

The MUC-M1BT1 cable supports in-ear headphones from the XBA-Z5, A3, A2, H3, H2 series. Just like changing the original cable to the accompanying cable, you can attach MUC-M1BT1 to the in-ear headphones.

Kira-Kira Names - Shiny Names for Kids to the Chagrin of Many in Japan

A new trend for children's names sweeping Japan is the "kira-kira name" phenomenon.  "Kira-kira" literally means "shiny" or "sparkly" and what is going on is kids are getting shiny new names that look or sound cute or interesting, but are unintelligible to all but the kid's parents.  The Chinese Kanji are being used as a phonetic symbol rather than for the meaning of the kanji.  And names are being given that sound like characters from animation films or games. 

Akihabaranews.com - Casio STB-1000 Bluetooth Fitness Apps Sports Watch

Casio America has announced the release of a new sports watch that utilizes Bluetooth v4.0 and enables wearers to access personal fitness data from mobile apps, operate a music player on a smartphone, etc.

Casio will display the watch at CES (the International Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas, January 7-10.

Tokyo Game Show 2014: Prelim Observations (GALLERY) - AkihabaraNews.com

Very Big Game Show
If you haven't been to Makuhari Messe before, know that 'convention center' doesn't quite do it justice. No, 'stadium' is a closer approximation of the venue's size and footprint on the northeastern edge of Tokyo Bay [MAP], part of the Tokyo Metro Area, but actually in Chiba Prefecture (not far from from Tokyo Disney Land).

You Tell Us: Did Sony's Sexed-Up PS Vita Ad Deserve to be Yanked? - AkihabaraNews.com
The YouTube spot features(ed) a seductively fem-British medical professional breathily placating and reassuring an implicitly male patient struggling with uhhh...struggling with himself...a little too much. It’s well beyond innuendo, but then in the reveal it turns out she’s not talking about self-interfering at all (watch below).