Now you can protect your smartphone with a new line of gorgeous Sailor Moon earphone jack accessories, featuring miniature magical items and weapons from the anime series.
In this digital age, it’s hard to imagine life without technology at our every beck and call, our cell phones in particular. While smartphones have only been mainstream for a decade or so, most of us have a hard time remembering life before them, and would be hard-pressed to go a day without one.
But how far would you go to keep from losing your precious phone/lifeline? Would you run out into traffic? Jump into a frigid lake? Or, do as this guy did and stick your hand deep down into a toilet? If you would do the latter, just be sure you don’t get your arm stuck and require the fire department to come to your rescue.
Convenience stores around the world are known for stocking everyday items like toiletries, magazines, snacks and soft drinks.
But in Japan, the konbini is also a place to send and receive deliveries, buy movie and theatre tickets, and pick up a life-sized Eva doll and Evangelion SIM-free smartphone.
Music has all but gone entirely digital. Video rental stores are a critically endangered species. Even video games are steadily moving towards more online distribution. At this rate we’ll soon be welcoming the first generation to think sticking a piece of plastic into a machine for entertainment is as attractive an idea as rubbing two sticks together for fire.
Then again, isn’t there something intrinsic in humans to want to put a cartridge or disc into something for entertainment?
That’s not a rhetorical question. I really have no idea, but the makers of Pico Cassette are hoping so. This device will load video games both new and old into your smartphone by plugging into its headphone jack.
Our rice-resurrecting Japanese writer Meg isn’t just one of our favorite writers, she’s also one of our globe-trotting writers! And while we’re always happy to hear from her, this report she filed from China has a particularly special place in our hearts because it’s from the Shaolin Temple in Hénán Province!
In addition to sightseeing, it seems that Meg also took the opportunity to chat with some of the Shaolin monks. So, what did Meg want to discuss with the ascetics she met? Did she ask them to accept her as a disciple or get them to teach her a special technique to defeat all her enemies? Or maybe asking them to tell her the secret to eternal life? Not quite…
In Japan, playing video games isn’t really considered to be a “geeky”, boys’ hobby as much as it can be in the west. The rise of smartphone games in particular have made playing video games in public totally normal, and you’re just as likely to see a young, besuited salarywoman (virtual) button-mashing away on the train as you are a teenage boy.
This commercial for smartphone MMORPG Avabel Online shows what we mean! In it, a group of female friends (who are actually budding actresses who won a competition to be the promotional “faces” of the game), are shown playing together in various locations – a cafe, someone’s bedroom, and more. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also a pretty cool ad to watch.
Evangelion fans, rejoice! If you were wondering what more you could possibly add to you collection of EVA goods, you won’t have to wait much longer for the next must-have item – the Evangelion smartphone, which is scheduled to go on sale around the end of this year.
As if that weren’t exciting enough, you can also become an official “supporter” which will get you the latest, up-to-date information, plus a special gift.
On 26 May, Chinese internet company NetEase announced the release of a new smartphone game titled The Great Tokyo Air Raid. The game allows you to pilot a bomber and drop ordnance on 14 of Japan’s most populated areas.
After completing a mission, the player is awarded points based on how many cities they have destroyed. The points will also come with a message such as “Thank you for your contribution to world peace!”
This is how the game is being reported in Japan at least. And while all of those facts are true, after playing through The Great Tokyo Air Raid myself, it’s actually only about a tenth as disconcerting as the media would have you believe.
…It’s still a little unsettling though.
For those of us working in high-tech societies, connection and communication can be as valuable as any resource. A single missed call can turn into a missed business chance, so making sure you can be reached no matter how furiously you’re typing is important. But at the office, no one wants to be that jerk that just leaves their ringer on. And it’s pretty easy to miss a call with just vibration mode.
However, the writers for the Japanese-language side of RocketNews24 may have come up with a solution for you. All you need to do is keep your phone in range of view while you’re using the computer. There are, obviously, a number of ways to do this, but our writer P.K. thinks he’s found the best way: With a bra!
There are many ways that data is transferred these days, be it fiber optic cables, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 4G-LTE, and a whole slew of other brand names and acronyms the meanings of which I don’t care to learn.
Now Panasonic has come up with a way to send and receive data that’s easy for everyone to understand: light. Actually it uses light emitting diodes (LED) to be exact, but that’s about as technical as this explanation needs to get, I promise.
Smartphone addiction is a worldwide problem, with many of us unable to keep our eyes off our little magic boxes long enough to cross the street safely or make occasional eye contact with loved ones.
So what happens when your beloved pocket companion takes an accidental dip into your drink (or, heaven forbid, the toilet)? Well, before you start gnashing and wailing, you might want to try out Reviveaphone, the new “magic” product that claims to bring your electronic hand buddy back from silicone heaven…
In a lot of ways, digital distribution of video games is a great thing, as it allows developers to easily add new content to a title after its release. It’s a double-edged sword, though, and that same streamlined pathway from programmer to player can also be used to quickly make changes that take things away.
A few weeks ago, we took a look at a smartphone game whose lonely, jaded protagonist and his mystical, jaded companion use their powers to make affectionate couples meet with a host of calamities, including straight blowing them up. Apple, however, is not cool with this sort of vengeful fantasy, and so the iOS version of the game is being toned down and given a new name since the original title, Explode, Real Types! no longer describes the game’s contents.
You know what everyone in Japan loves these days? Smartphone games. They keep you busy on the daily commute without requiring too much in-depth concentration, and Japanese smartphone game makers are seriously smart – they know how to keep players hooked. By combining the human need for constant “reward” feedback with our penchant for adorable cartoon kitties, they’ve come up with a winner of an app that everyone who likes fun can’t stop playing – Neko Atsume!
Now available for both Android and iOS and with a whole slew of new features, there’s never been a better time to get into this incredibly addictive yet simple cat-collecting time-waster…
Those of us without 20/20 vision suffer from a catch-22 that can be extremely aggravating: If you can’t find your glasses, you can’t see, but if you can’t see, you can’t find your glasses. How many collective hours have we all spent searching for those pesky frames? Damn you, ocular deficiencies!
But our days of squinting to see and blindly feeling around to find our glasses are over, my friends! We all have Japanese Twitter user @zzzdecozzz to thank for this incredibly simple, yet genius idea: Use your smartphone’s camera as a magnifying glass.
Anyone who’s addicted to the constant stimuli provided by tablets and smartphones (read: most of us) will definitely agree that sometimes it’s just too much effort to hold the darn things in front of our faces while mindlessly scrolling. Especially during bathtime, when slippery hands become a serious hazard, or when you’re just lounging around in bed, our wonder gizmos can be a pain to hold onto.
Luckily, this young man has come up with a genius method of hands-free phone-gazing. All you’ll need is a glass-topped table, a smartphone or tablet device, and the willingness to overlook one teensy flaw…
“Y’all can’t be serious man,” HTC’s painfully awkward rap video begins as the beat kicks in. And, for a second there, we kind of wondered the exact same thing ourselves.
Released last week by Taiwanese (high) tech company HTC, “Hold the Crown” is an ultra-low budget battle-rap dedicated to the self-proclaimed “king” of smartphones, the HTC One M8, and calling out rivals the iPhone 6 and Samsung’s Galaxy. It’s one of the most baffling yet brilliant things we’ve ever seen.
For years the increasing elderly population of Japan has been under attack by scammers posing as their sons and daughters. In what’s called the “oreore sagi” (Hey, it’s me! Con) the scammer calls on the telephone and poses as the victim’s child asking them for an emergency load due to an accident or trouble at work.
Now it seems the fraud is on the other foot as younger smartphone users have been reporting unusual emails from dear old Ma asking them to click on a link. However, an entertaining bright side to these attempted crimes can be found too. One blogger eloquently put it: These junk mails are fascinating in that they can be quite elaborate and yet also look really half-assed at the same time.
Earth’s mightiest heroes will rely on a bunch of Samsung gear in “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” this summer.
Samsung is showing off a bunch tech developed for the sequel at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) currently taking place in Las Vegas.
CNET’s Shara Tibken snapped a few shots of the devices ranging from a see-through phone for Tony Stark to smartwatches that will be worn by the Avengers team.