The Japanese are moving a number of functions to their mobile phones. One of the latest innovations is replacing cash and credit cards. Maybe some day this technology will find its way into our mobile phones.
That tech has been available for a while i believe. The sad part is when i went for a holiday in Japan 2-3 years ago, their cellphones (cheap ones on display) have more features (eg: photo capture and printing!) and are higher quality than most of the ones we are using now. It almost seems like we are getting tech dregs in the mobile world.
Living in Canada and subjected to the few choices we have for wireless service providers is not fun with expensive phones which have basically nothing new (also add the fact that companies like to lock phones).
I can remember when the RAZR just came out and it was like $600 for something people in Asian can buy for half with more features. Or if they are willing to dish out that range of dollars, they can get something thinner.
Buying drinks from a vending machine by cell would be a great start, but alas no widespread acceptance of that yet.
well, here are some other features that haven't been noticed (according to Docomo Now booklet April 2006):
- MP3 Player
- 3D games (like Golf and Resident Evil)
- osaifu keitai and credit card service called ( iD ): actually supported services are: iD, Edy, Smartplus and QUICPay. Some are credit card some are prepaid service.
- GPS (with capability to mark and track special mobile phones, like your kids)
- Short Voice Message Service
- Megapixel camera (I've seen 3 MegaPixel)
- Video Call
- I've seen some handphone with Fingerprint Recognition
sezyboy, if you think Canada has it hard on the technology front than you should come and live in your home country's technologically retarded cousin, Australia. At least the U.S. is just south of the border, whereas Australia is stuck somewhere between the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean's. A 2megapixel camera phone over here is the shit and we are only just starting to get phones with hard drives onto the market (well, sometime this year).
punkouter, you forgot to add the Samsung SCH-V770, a 7megapixel phone with "manual focus, shutter priority, AE lock and an optical zoom as well as MP3 functionality and a business card reader." It was launched at CeBit 2005 (10th March).
I've also heard of facial recognition being built into Japanese phones as a security feature.
I can't say I share bgerber's view that cash will be replaced anytime soon; weren't credit cards supposed to replace cash by now? Cash is too convenient, attracts 0% interest (unless you are borrowing it), and, as the saying goes "money talks".
well,.. actually I'm not an expert in this mobile phone business. but living in Japan does gives me some insight about new common technology that has been the talks nowadays. and if anyone ever doubted technologies like Felica (e-wallet) and all can be used casually, doubt no more. most of the convenience store here can accept Felica system with Edy (at least am/pm stores definitely can). even the cafetaria at my work place implemented the system so that we don't have to queue too long when paying.
a japanese friend of mine once told me, japan is a bit late (compared to korea and US) in computer world but for mobile phone japan might be the number 1 leader. looking at what products and features produced every few months, i never cared to prove it myself.