Apple Said to Plan iPhone for Japan With Tap-to-Pay for Subways

Apple Said to Plan iPhone for Japan With Tap-to-Pay for Subways


  • A future iPhone will include technology called FeliCa
  • Apple intends to work with multiple transit card providers
  • The FeliCa chip is able to process a transaction in 0.1 seconds

Apple is planning a new iPhone feature for Japan that will enable users to pay for mass-transit rides with their smartphones instead of physical payment cards.

A future iPhone will include technology called FeliCa, a mobile tap-to-pay standard in Japan developed by Sony Corp., according to people familiar with the matter.

The FeliCa chip will let customers in Japan store their public bus and train passes on their iPhones. Users would then be able to tap their phones against the entrance scanners instead of using physical cards. While the FeliCa chip is the standard technology underlying the service, there are several different providers of transit payment cards based on the type of transit and areas within Japan.

The Near Field Communication technology powering Apple’s mobile-payments service, Apple Pay, is prevalent in North America, Europe and Australia, but the FeliCa standard dominates Japan with a penetration of 1.9 million payment terminals, according to the Bank of Japan. The terminals handled 4.6 trillion yen ($46 billion or Rs. 308,478 crores) in transactions in 2015. Last year, there were 1.3 million NFC terminals in the US and 320,000 in the UK, according to research from Let’s Talk Payments and the UK Cards Association.

Apple intends to work with multiple transit card providers, one person said. The major players there include the Suica and Pasmo networks. Theoretically, virtual representations of the transit passes would be stored in the iPhone’s Wallet application, said the person, who asked not be identified because the planning is private. The card companies sell access to transit services both as-needed and via monthly packages.

Apple’s opportunity in Japan is significant with the country alone representing 8 percent of the company’s total revenue and almost 11 percent of operating profit in the most recent quarter.

Apple has planned to launch these new features with the next iPhone models, which the company is set to unveil in September, according to people familiar with the matter. However, the company could hold back the transit card feature to next year’s model if discussions with the Japan-based payment networks fall apart, one person said. Apple is already at work on a major redesign of the iPhone for 2017 that focuses more heavily on the display by removing the Home button, according to a person familiar with the matter.

(Also see: Apple Developing Virtual Home Button for Future iPhone Models: Report)

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment.

The FeliCa chip is able to process a transaction in 0.1 seconds, according to Sony. Super-swift transaction speeds are critical for adoption in the fast-paced environment of Japan’s transit network, the person said. Each sale over Apple Pay currently goes through a server and requires bank approval — which can slow the process.

In addition to supporting the transit-pass network, the FeliCa chip can also store e-money, an electric form of currency now widely accepted at vending machines, convenience stores and cafes in Japan. Apple is in discussions with at least one major financial institution to support these e-money transactions, according to one of the people.

Apple Pay first launched in October 2014 in the US with the iPhone 6 and has since expanded to Australia, Canada, China, Hong Kong, France, Singapore, Switzerland and the UK. Apple Pay contributes to the company’s rapidly growing services business, which grew 19 percent year-over-year to about $6 billion (roughly Rs. 40,218 crores) in the fiscal third quarter.

Earlier this month, Apple struck a deal with Japan-based phone carrier KDDI to allow customers to bill iTunes purchases to their phone service bill instead of directly to their credit card. Apple’s deal with the Japanese carrier is indicative of Apple’s payment-related negotiations with firms in Japan and follows up the company’s work on activating carrier-based iTunes billing in Germany, the UK, Russia, Switzerland, and Taiwan.

In tandem with the upcoming mobile payments launch for Japan, Apple is preparing to ship mass-transit navigation support for Japan in its iPhone Maps application, the company posted on its website in July. This feature, coming in iOS 10 later this year, will allow users to find departure and arrival times for transportation across the region.

© 2016 Bloomberg L.P.

Tags: Apple, iPhone, Sony, FelliCa, Mobile

Amazon Japan Offices Raided in Antitrust Case: Report

Amazon Japan Offices Raided in Antitrust Case: Report

Japan’s fair trade watchdog raided the offices of AmazonJapan over allegations that it improperly pressured retailers that sold products on its site, local media said Monday.

The Japanese unit of the US-based internet retailer forced conditions such as requiring retailers to sell products below the price they advertised on rival sites, the Nikkei business daily said.

Japan’s Fair Trade Commission declined to confirm the report, but added that it was “not incorrect”.

Amazon Japan did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Last year, the European Union’s antitrust watchdog opened a formal investigation into Amazon’s ebook distribution.

The case centred on clauses Amazon had with publishers which may shield the company from competitors, including an obligation to be informed of more favourable terms being offered by rival.

Tags: Amazon, Amazon Japan, Apps, E Commerce, Internet, Japan, Online Marketplace, Online Retail


As Sharp, Japan show war, Smaller Japan Tech companies Thrive in Oled area of interest

As Sharp, Japan Display Struggle, Smaller Japan Tech Firms Thrive in Oled Niche

A glimmer of light for Japan’s battered electronics area: even as Sharp Corp and Japan show Inc lag South Korean competitors in making organic light emitting diode (Oled) screens, a few smaller japaneseequipment makers are booming in area of interest areas in addition up the Oled production system.

The shift closer to Oled has been brought about specially through Apple Inc’s expected adoption of nextgeneration Oled generation in its phones as early as subsequent 12 months.

Oled presentations are commonly thinner and permit greater flexibility than liquid crystal show (liquid crystal display) displays. research firm IHS predicts shipments of Oled smartphone panels will overtake LCDs in 2020.

Already, some much less 9aaf3f374c58e8c9dcdd1ebf10256fa5 eastern equipment makers inclusive ofCanon Tokki Corp and Dai Nippon Printing Co have seen strong Oled-associated orders from Samsungshow, a unit of Samsung Electronics, and other international panel makers.

The achievement of these corporations displays a broader fashion in Japan’s client electronics zone. Former giants consisting of Sharp and Sony Corp have struggled against the dimensions in their Asianopponents, whilst lesser-recognised manufacturers have survived by way of developing area of interest technology.

Tokki, a Canon Inc unit which makes vacuum evaporators used in making Oled panels, has an order e-bookof several years, in step with industry executives.

CEO Teruhisa Tsugami told Reuters Tokki plans to double manufacturing potential this yr to meet sturdycall for from customers together with South Korean, jap and chinese panel makers. “The Oled market isabruptly flourishing on news that Apple is expected to adopt the era,” Tsugami stated.

Tokki has spent years operating closely with Samsung to increase gadget nice proper for makingcellphone panels. Its competition consist of South Korea’s SFA Engineering Corp and Japan’s Ulvac.

deliver chain
japanese producers commenced making an investment in Oled era within the Nineties, led by usingSony and Pioneer Corp. most have when you consider that given up due to the excessive costs andillness costs, but smaller system makers inside the deliver chain have kept at it, in large part helped viadeveloping income to Samsung and LG display.

“Samsung accounts for roughly 70 percentage of orders for the ones suppliers,” stated Hisashi Hattori, Oled representative at Tokyo-primarily based evaluation Atelier Corp. “The modern supply chain has been made for Samsung.”

Dai Nippon Printing has come to be a pacesetter in producing evaporation mask, used to coat light-emitting materials at unique locations on panels. It stated last month it’ll triple its production capabilitywith the aid of 2020.

“That decision was based on our forecast of growth inside the Oled marketplace,” stated Mitsuru Tsuchiya, fashionable supervisor of Dai Nippon Printing’s first-class optronics department.

With Sharp and Japan display as well as chinese show makers inclusive of BOE technologyorganization and Tianma Microelectronics increasing funding in Oled production, the market is visiblegrowing sixteen percent a year to $44 billion by 2020, in line with a Markets and Markets record.

Nikon Corp expects orders from global panel makers to pressure up shipments of its lithography system – which mission circuit patterns directly to flat panels – with the aid of extra than three quarters in the yearto March.

The firm, higher regarded for its cameras, reckons operating profit this year from flat panel lithographyequipment by myself will hit JPY 50 billion ($472 million), supporting offset the effect of weaker digital camera call for. it is more than its earnings forecast for the general employer.

shares of Ulvac, that’s more uncovered to panel gadget manufacturing than other various japanesefriends, jumped 64 percent over the last one year, as opposed to a 22 percentage decline inside thewider market.

even as the Oled increase is attracting rivals and making opposition tougher, Junji Kido, Yamagatauniversity professor and organic electronics professional, said Japan “still has an aspect in Oledmaterials and gadget technologies.”

it is such a waste that domestic panel makers have now not tapped their technologies.”

© Thomson Reuters 2016

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Tags: domestic enjoyment, Japan display, Mobiles, Oled, Samsung, Sharp, pills

stimulated by using Circus, Sisters Chart Japan Pop niche

Inspired By Circus, Sisters Chart Japan Pop Niche

japanese band of two sisters, Charan Po Rantan’s, vocalist Momo plays at the Japan Society in new york. (AFP photograph)
the big apple: Their head-to-toe lovely factor brings to mind fellow crowd-captivating jap musicians,however for the two sisters who form Charan-Po-Rantan, the muse comes no longer from pop idols but thecircus.

With songs driven by using an accordion, Charan-Po-Rantan has created a valid that marries J-pop with klezmer, the festive music of Ashkenazi Jews, and the theatrical atmospherics of vaudeville.

Making their new york debut, the sisters in Charan-Po-Rantan — which loosely translates as sloppy —appeared in poofy clothes of wildly organized cloth strips and matching pink and pink top hats that wouldhave come out of Dr. Seuss.

Charan-Po-Rantan represents in a few ways an opportunity to the opportunity scene in Japan — the duomoves musically beyond the sugar-sweet keyboards of mainstream J-Pop but is even further eliminatedfrom something consciously hip, with the sisters unperturbed via stylistic comparisons to Disney.

“The number of humans in underground circles has been growing in latest years (on the japanese tunescene), so it is less complicated now for people to get into track they did not realize,” stated Koharu Matsunaga, 26, the duo’s accordionist and main songwriter.

“We do not see ourselves as out of the mainstream. we have been advised earlier than that the tune is ‘myth‘ or Disney; that can be how human beings see us, but we are no longer seeking to chart that line,” she told AFP.

Koharu — who carried an accordion-fashioned handbag to the interview as her sister, 22-12 monthsvintagesinger Momo, added along her ever-gift toy crammed pig with sewn buttons for eyes — said that Charan-Po-Rantan permit its ideas go with the flow freely, and not using a at the back of-the-scenes manufacturerdictating their sound or appearance.

Koharu said that the sisters’ mom designed their costumes and that the accordion first enticed herthroughout a early life experience to the circus.

She asked “Santa Claus” for an accordion and ultimately turned into scouring YouTube to discover uniquestyles together with klezmer and Roma song.

within the circus, there are lots of various human beings and nationalities all gathered collectively, so we desired to make a band that encompasses a bunch of different genres and styles,” she said.

No Banal Pop Lyrics

The duo’s new york debut, held Thursday night time on the Japan Society, additionally displayed a playfulcontact of irony.

Momo defined to the group that the sisters desired to play a japanese game and then executed a vocal-and-accordion rendition of the topic from incredible Mario, the classic video game of the Italian plumber created by Nintendo.

The songs’ issues often live near the circus — a recent unmarried is entitled “Anata no Kuni no Merry-moveround” (“Your united states‘s Merry-crossround“).

Koharu, initially bored with lyricism, gradually began to jot down grimly about her non-public existence,along with, as she says with amusing, a repeated situation within the beyond of men hitting her up formoney.

“I certainly disliked normal J-Pop as it changed into too honest and easy — ‘i like you,’ ‘I sense lonely,’ ‘i’m glad,'” she stated.

Charan-Po-Rantan’s target market has been in addition eclectic. The duo played Japan’s Fuji Rockcompetition in July, performing an early set on the identical day as Foo warring parties and Motorhead, and in 2013 came to america to play South by Southwest.

Charan-Po-Rantan located a fan in Twitter’s co-founder Jack Dorsey, who invited the social media-savvy duo to play for the release of cell payment service square in Japan.

however while the duo appreciates the growing foreign target market, the sisters play down theirpursuits.

we’re not seeking torepresent‘ klezmer or carry this to the forefront,” Koharu stated. “we are simplydoing what we like.”

Sony Says Deadly Japan Quakes Will Shake Profit, Sales

Sony Says Deadly Japan Quakes Will Shake Profit, Sales

Sony said on Tuesday that a pair of deadly quakes in Japan last month would dent its financial results, while the company warned that net profit would fall by nearly half, largely due to a year-earlier gain.

The quakes, which caused major damage in southern Kyushu and claimed dozens of lives, would hit operating profit in the fiscal year to March 2017 by as much as JPY 115 billion ($1.05 billion or roughly Rs. 7,101 crores), Sony said, adding that sales would fall on year.

Major firms including Sony and Toyota temporarily shuttered factories in the wake of the disaster, hitting production and sales, while costs will also include repairing damaged buildings.

“Due to the impact of the 2016 Kumamoto earthquakes, sales (in certain divisions) are expected to be lower than the level anticipated prior to the earthquakes,” Sony said.

The announcement came as Sony said it would book a net profit of JPY 80 billion this year, down nearly 46 percent from the just-ended fiscal year when it booked a one-time gain from the sale of shares in camera and medical equipment giant Olympus.

In 2013, Sony launched a medical joint venture with endoscope maker Olympus, which was struggling to deal with a massive loss-hiding scandal and was in the market for a partner.

Last month, Sony posted 147.8 billion annual profit for the year that ended in March, with its results boosted by strong sales of its PlayStation games console.

The company said at the time that it could not offer a forecast for the current year, citing the potential impact of the quakes. It began restarting affected plants earlier this month.

For the current fiscal year, Sony expects a JPY 300 billion operating profit on sales of JPY 7.8 trillion.

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Tags: Cameras, Home Entertainment, Mobiles, Sony, Tablets, Wearables


facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinteresttumblrmailWednesday, 6 April – Ran,17:25, €9, IFI

Kurosawa’s interpretation of King Lear was ten years in the making, meticulously devised over a series of painted storyboards that were published with the screenplay. He combined Shakespeare with legends of daimyō Mōri Motonari, and filmed almost entirely in long shots on the slopes of Japan’s largest active volcano, Mount Aso, with a cast of 1,400. Buy your tickets here.

Thursday, 7 April – Typeset, 19:00, Free, Image Now

A broad range of contemporary Irish typographic design is being showcased in the Image Now gallery space. The changing face of Irish design will be expressed through animation, gifs and 3D illustrations, as an expression of the trends and experimentation happening within the industry. Image Now has a strong connection with typographic design, having exhibited shows such as Josef Müller-Brockmann, 50 Years of Helvetica and Neue Grafik. The Facebook event page is here.

Friday, 8 April – Precarity, 16:00, Free (book in advance), ATRL

precarity--4Precarity is a video installation by Mieke Bal and Michelle Williams Gamaker. Commissioned to coincide with the Deleuze and Art conference, the five-screen installation uses precarious economic situations as a platform to explore precarity in different social contexts, from relationships to health, labour laws and human rights. The exhibition is based on Flaubert’s Madame Bovary, the five screens representing her temptation, seduction, and descent into economic ruin. Mieke Bal’s documentaries on migration and identity have been exhibited internationally, and she has written on video installation, sculpture and abstraction. Grab a ticket here.

Saturday, 9 April – Overhead, The Albatross, 20:00, pay what you like, The Workman’s

After the much anticipated Learning to Growl was released earlier this month, post-rock six-pieceOverhead, The Albatross will be performing their new material in The Workman’s this Saturday. Several years in production, it took decamping to a studio in the Czech Republic to get to preproduction phase, with tracks being laid over and added organically as the band worked out what direction their sound should take. The finished LP is filled with soaring highs and lows, all in their signature orchestral style. It amounts to a mesmerising experience; Saturday’s performance should be no less. Visit the Facebook event page here.

Sunday, 10 April – Phototropism, 12:00 – 18:00, Free, Library Project

Phototropism opens in the Library Project this Thursday, but its growing botanic display will take place over a month-long installation. Eleven photographers give their responses to the significance of a plant’s movement towards a light source, interpreted as a search for subsistence that we all share and, ultimately, a search for a common good. The Library Project bookshop will be offering a specially curated selection of literature to accompany the exhibition and an assortment of succulents and cacti. More here.

Monday, 11 April – Tom Climent: In Its Reflection, 10:00 – 17:30, Free, Solomon Fine Art

Tom Climent, originally trained as an engineer, looks at structured spaces through representation and abstraction. His debut solo exhibition balances colour and texture, using memory and feeling to explore the exchange between the subconscious and physical processes of painting. More here.

Tuesday, 12 April – Michael Boran, Through the Undergrowth, 10:30-17:30, Free, Kevin Kavanagh

Michael Boran’s photographs, filled with pylons, plant stocks and natural and human-made monuments of every kind, relate to one another intuitively, through viewpoint and desire. By keeping background detail to a minimum and collating each piece, the subjects are given a purity that remains compromised by limitations in depth and temporality. Read more here.


Nasa, Japan Make 2.95 Million Satellite Earth Images Free

Nasa, Japan Make 2.95 Million Satellite Earth Images Free

All Earth imagery – consisting of more than 2.95 million individual scenes from a prolific Japanese remote sensing instrument operating aboard Nasa’s Terra spacecraft since late 1999 has now been made available to users everywhere at no cost , Nasa announced on Friday.

“The public will have unlimited access to the complete 16-plus-year database for Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument, which images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet,” the US space agency said in a statement.

ASTER’s database currently consists of more than 2.95 million individual scenes. The content ranges from the devastating aftermath of flooding in Pakistan to volcanic eruptions in Iceland and wildfires in California.

Previously, users could access ASTER’s global digital topographic maps of Earth online at no cost, but paid METI a nominal fee to order other ASTER data products.

Launched in 1999, ASTER has far exceeded its five-year design life and will continue to operate for the foreseeable future as part of the suite of five Earth-observing instruments on Terra.

“We anticipate a dramatic increase in the number of users of our data, with new and exciting results to come,” said Michael Abrams, ASTER science team leader at Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, home to ASTER’s US science team.

ASTER is used to create detailed maps of land surface temperature, reflectance and elevation.

The instrument acquires images in visible and thermal infrared wavelengths, with spatial resolutions ranging from about 15 to 90 meters.

The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and changes over time.

Example applications include monitoring glacial advances and retreats, monitoring potentially active volcanoes, identifying crop stress, determining cloud morphology and physical properties, evaluating wetlands, monitoring thermal pollution, monitoring coral reef degradation, mapping surface temperatures of soils and geology, and measuring surface heat balance, Nasa said.

To access the data, users can visit the link.

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Tags: ASTER, Internet, Nasa, Science