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  • Tuesday, 3rd March 2015
    In General Japan News,

    Japan gearing itself for 5G ahead of 2020 Olympics

    A series of mobile operators have announced that they will be collaborating with one another to develop 5G wireless so that networks can run at high frequencies at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

    The largest operator in Japan, DoCoMo, and Nokia have already started to demonstrate technical progress on 5G radio equipment, achieving data transmission speeds of higher than two gigabits a second - this is in contrast to the download speeds of 300 megabits per second that is achieved through 4G. It is hoped that an outdoor 70 GHz trial will take place later this year, on the airwave spectrum that ranges from 10 to 100 GHz.

    The two companies said in a joint statement: “This development underscores [DoCoMo’s] readiness to deliver a state-of-the-art 5G network in 2020 and beyond."

    5G technology was a big talking point at Barcelona's recent Mobile World Congress, as there is no point to invest in new network equipment unless there is major improvement in speed or functions. It is expected that a final standard for 5G will be set in 2019, a year before the Olympics.

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  • Monday, 2nd March 2015
    In General Japan News, Business In Japan, General Japan News,

    Japan launching 'Free Wi-Fi' campaign from April 1st

    Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism has announced that it will be launching a new 'Free Wi-Fi' campaign across the country from next month in order to fill its nationwide Wi-Fi-gap issue.

    Following a series of calls from officials to improve the country's Wi-Fi accessibility, the department's special wireless task force has developed a sign that will designate public places that offer the free service to customers. It is hoped that travellers will see the sign and take advantage of the connectivity, all while purchasing some food in the process.

    Businesses will be able to apply to receive one of these designated signs from April 1st, and in conjunction with this, there will also be a multilingual website that will offer for more information to foreign travellers about where they can get Wi-Fi access.

    This comes after a series of attempts by officials to improve the situation in a country that is otherwise known for its technological innovations. Recent reports have suggested that private businesses have to establish networks through a third-party pay provider, and around half of the free municipal networks do not function at high speeds.

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  • Friday, 27th February 2015
    In General Japan News, Business In Japan, General Japan News, Japan Travel News,

    Tokyo Skytree gets fast-track ticket

    Foreign visitors to the city of Tokyo will be eligible for a fast-track ticket that will allow them to bypass the long lines for one of the Japanese capital's most popular attractions.

    The Tokyo Skytree, which is the tallest structure in Japan at 2,080 feet tall, is one of the best places to get an aerial view of the bustling metropolis and features on many lists of things to do while holidaying in the capital.

    Primarily a television and radio broadcast site for the Kanto region, it also contains restaurants and an observation tower that is exceptionally popular with tourists and residents alike.

    Visitors can expect to wait an hour during weekdays and two hours during weekends to take the ride to the top in one of the 13 super-fast lifts. However, visitors and foreign residents can now access the observation deck after just a five-minute wait if they use a designated lane and purchase a fast-track ticket, introduced just last week (February 19th).

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  • Friday, 27th February 2015
    In General Japan News, Business In Japan, General Japan News, Japan Travel News, Events In Japan,

    Tokyo to get Godzilla-themed hotel

    It's the news that Godzilla fans have all been waiting for - Shinjuku's 30-storey Hotel Gracery will fling open its scaly doors later this year to offer enthusiasts of Japan's favourite monster the chance to revel in the film's cult status.

    Situated on top of the Toho cinema - which is owned by the very company that made and distributed many of the Godzilla films - the venue proudly offers residents the chance to explore various items of memorabilia from the film franchise.

    The hotel design will also feature a gigantic statue erected at the top that periodically shrieks in anger as though about to crush nearby buildings under its enormous feet.

    While the enormous structure on the roof of the building will be fully illuminated with glowing eyes and mouth, it will not be able to ignite the surrounding neighbourhood with its atomic breath.

    The hotel is already accepting reservations and plans to open on April 24th, with rooms going on weekdays for 40,000 yen (£215) or during the weekend or 50,000 yen during weekends.

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