Thursday, February 19, 2004

In Japan, A Wireless Vision of Future for U.S.

Washington Post

"About 70 million Japanese -- 55 percent of the population -- have signed up for Internet access from their cellular phones, a threefold increase from 2000. Cell phones, or keitai in Japanese, are closing in on computers as the device of choice for surfing the Internet. While the Japanese are using their cell phones in the same way many Americans use their laptop computers or personal digital assistants, they also are pulling out their phones to watch TV, navigate labyrinthine city streets with built-in GPS systems, download music, take and transmit home movies, scan bar-coded information, get e-coupons for discounts on food and entertainment, pay bills, play Final Fantasy, even program karaoke machines."

I think it's great that Japan is out there to remind us we aren't the best/most advanced at everything. I've never been to Japan (I believe guest-blogger Tom spent some time there), but I've always imagined it as some combination of LA in Blade Runner, Wonka's Chocolate Factory, and Las Vegas. Lost In Translation did little to dispel that myth. I just think it's fun to be in awe of someplace, even if I've sexed it up a bit in my head.

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