Japanese phones, WiFi & walkie-talkies: the definitive guide

Tonester

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Hey guys just a quick question for those that have used the data sim from https://www.japan-rail-pass.com.au/services/simcard

When I arrive in japan do I need to input all of those settings from the instructions in my phone or will my phone connect automatically?

I’m using a iPhone XS

Thanks
From memory, you do the APN setting thing on your phone and then you'll be sweet.
I did it on a few minutes, while on the train from Narita into Tokyo last time. It took a couple minutes to sync and then I had great connectivity for the duration of my trip.
 

Hyst

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You do have to input it and just one small mistake and you will not be connected. Watch out for automatic space after punctuation!
Wife phone did that, and we stugged a bit.:confused:
 

Crispy013

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Jun 6, 2010
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Hey guys just a quick question for those that have used the data sim from https://www.japan-rail-pass.com.au/services/simcard

When I arrive in japan do I need to input all of those settings from the instructions in my phone or will my phone connect automatically?

I’m using a iPhone XS

Thanks
Yes. Just input APN settings and password. Turn off phone and back on to connect.
 
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K_Bird

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Jan 3, 2010
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Anybody tried mobal, https://www.mobal.com/japan-sim-card/#modal ? We need one with voice and data the other one data only will do.
Have not seen them before - but they have voice+data for short stay.

I can’t see any answer to this question, and given that you’re now in Japan, I assume you’ve figured it out. But in case it’s useful to anyone else ...

I got two of these sims for Mr Bird and I to use over the past fortnight. Ordered online and selected free delivery. They showed up within a week, even though it was over the new year break.

Worked perfectly for the time we were there - we used them for calls, texts and data. A couple of things to note:

The amount you pay upfront is just under half the cost (¥3000). The remainder (¥4500) is payable when you activate. I didn’t read it properly and assumed that the first payment was the total cost, so I was surprised to be charged “again” when I activated.

Data is unlimited but tethering is not allowed.

Texts are possible, but the costs are not included. Another instance of me not reading the fine print and wondering why I have a couple of random charges for a dollar or two on my credit card!
 

Hyst

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I can’t see any answer to this question, and given that you’re now in Japan, I assume you’ve figured it out. But in case it’s useful to anyone else ...

I got two of these sims for Mr Bird and I to use over the past fortnight. Ordered online and selected free delivery. They showed up within a week, even though it was over the new year break.

Worked perfectly for the time we were there - we used them for calls, texts and data. A couple of things to note:

The amount you pay upfront is just under half the cost (¥3000). The remainder (¥4500) is payable when you activate. I didn’t read it properly and assumed that the first payment was the total cost, so I was surprised to be charged “again” when I activated.

Data is unlimited but tethering is not allowed.

Texts are possible, but the costs are not included. Another instance of me not reading the fine print and wondering why I have a couple of random charges for a dollar or two on my credit card!

Thank you very much for your information. :thumbs:
After reading some others experience we decided after all to stick with data sim 30 + 8 days. Choose the JR/Japan experience, and use real telephone at family and friends when needed.
 
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Mr.Roo

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Jun 12, 2019
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Hi could anyone advise as to whether my Australian Netflix Stan Disney iTunes etc will work in Japan. Will just be using iPads for the kids, hot spotting with the JR data sim. Is it a simple yes no worries, or do I require some sort of VPN?
Thx
 

southpaw

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Hi could anyone advise as to whether my Australian Netflix Stan Disney iTunes etc will work in Japan. Will just be using iPads for the kids, hot spotting with the JR data sim. Is it a simple yes no worries, or do I require some sort of VPN?
Thx
Netflix will revert to the catalogue of the country youre in. So you will get the Japanese version, our kids still found it ok especially since they downloaded a heap in Australia. I can’t speak for the other services.
 
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Donza

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Hi could anyone advise as to whether my Australian Netflix Stan Disney iTunes etc will work in Japan. Will just be using iPads for the kids, hot spotting with the JR data sim. Is it a simple yes no worries, or do I require some sort of VPN?
Thx
You'll need a vpn for everything bar Netflix.
Which as posted above. Is virtually the same as Australia.
My vpn efforts failed streaming foxtel.
 
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Mr.Roo

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You'll need a vpn for everything bar Netflix.
Which as posted above. Is virtually the same as Australia.
My vpn efforts failed streaming foxtel.

Thanks for the tips guys. Hopefully kids’ll be to busy/ exhausted for screen time.
 

Tonester

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YouTube is the best IMO.
So many things to watch plus live channel.
Etc ABC Australia news 24
Yes. I find I default to youtube more often than not if I want to watch something mindless and not want to commit to watching anything in particular
 
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hatto

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My experience with the JR data sim has been terrible at Nozawa. Very poor speeds if at all and although they say you can connect up to 5 devices, just didn't work well at all.
2.5 week in I ordered my old faithful Japan Wirless Pocket Wifi, had it sent to Nozawa post office and picked it up 2 days later
Will not be using again.
 

Tonester

Lift Line Nazi
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My experience with the JR data sim has been terrible at Nozawa. Very poor speeds if at all and although they say you can connect up to 5 devices, just didn't work well at all.
2.5 week in I ordered my old faithful Japan Wirless Pocket Wifi, had it sent to Nozawa post office and picked it up 2 days later
Will not be using again.
Hmmm. Strange I'm using right now, with no issue on the Shinkansen, as it's hurtling through some long as F@#k tunnel.
I've been using for about 2 weeks now. Other than one time when it dropped to 3G, I can't think of any issues I've had with it. I have not used it in Nozawa, however.
 
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Melskius

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My wi fi from whil-ma arrived a week before we depart. Will report what it is like once on the ground in Japan.
 

Melskius

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I posted this on the taqubin thread after people reported lost bags. I don't have a working phone number while in japan, only pocket wi-fi. Should I be setting up line app or whatsapp so that I can recieve calls via data if taqubin disaster strikes?? What do most people use?? ( Hyst suggest dual sim , but I don't have that option)
 
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Saski

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I posted this on the taqubin thread after people reported lost bags. I don't have a working phone number while in japan, only pocket wi-fi. Should I be setting up line app or whatsapp so that I can recieve calls via data if taqubin disaster strikes?? What do most people use?? ( Hyst suggest dual sim , but I don't have that option)
We used What's App for calls. Got a free sim via WAmazing, collected the sim card from their machine at Narita on arrival, not sure if there are other options for collection outside of airports. Easy to organise and use, but I couldn't get the internet to work on my mobile for some reason. Tried hot spotting to my tablet, worked but found the internet quite slow, so ended up hot spotting from husband's phone for web browsing. He was using the paid sim we pre-ordered from Japan Rail Pass website and that was great.
 
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Sandy

Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room
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Would these things be OK for use in japan?
it appears they are using
"Dual ISM-band sub Ghz and 2.4 Ghz"

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/okmilo/milo-the-action-communicator
http://www.ginsei-jp.com/920MHz_vs_24.html

No idea - but read the first paragraf - or wait for @Sandy
Yes, need to find out if the device uses other ISM bands as well as 920MHz. For example, Japan uses 433MHz for something else, but it's one of the ISM bands in other countries.
 

Hyst

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blowfin

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And other thing - it has become so easy to get a data sim for you telefon - and with LINE og other one it gives you many more possibilities - no problem with range or using the net.

Agree in general that a SIM is a great thing to have, but there are plenty of patches up in the mountains where mobile coverage can be sketchy.

Another useless product ...... imagine going up in a gondola/lift and listening to everyones convo's .

Are you sure about that? Privacy is advertised as a feature.
 

blowfin

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He means that with a "powerful speaker" in the device, everybody on the chairlift will hear everthing!!

I don't get it. Same deal with most comms devices. Does the product not work once you get off a lift or gondola?
 

Sandy

Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room
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He means that with a "powerful speaker" in the device, everybody on the chairlift will hear everything!!
I don't get it. Same deal with most comms devices. Does the product not work once you get off a lift or gondola?
You wear the device on your arm... the blurb says that the "powerful speaker" allows you to hear speech easily from that location while you're riding snow or swimming, etc. If you can hear speech from 30-40cm away, then everybody on a chairlift or gondola will hear it.
With other comms devices, you don't need to hear speech from 30-40cm away.
 
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PiedPiper

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I'm sure you can adjust the volume.
anyway my primary use case isn't going to be when i'm on a chairlift, or even in a ski resort.

I'd still like a definitive answer on the Legality of using this device in japan....
struggling to find any info on ISM bands?
 
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Hyst

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I'm sure you can adjust the volume.
anyway my primary use case isn't going to be when i'm on a chairlift, or even in a ski resort.

I'd still like a definitive answer on the Legality of using this device in japan....
struggling to find any info on ISM bands?

If you want a definitive answer, why not ask the producer and ask him if they are in compiance with Japanese law:

support@okmilo.com

You as a software person you should be able to get the best answer - on page 6 of the guide some help to ask the questions.

But as a startup they may first target the near english speaking markeds. (as they say a bit)
 

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PiedPiper

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So i did the smart thing and emailed them...

"Yes, Milo will be legal to use in Japan as it operates in unlicensed spectrum which is available in those countries. The issue is that we cannot sell into Japan until we complete the certification process and set up distribution."

Some funny language there, with the use of "will" vs "is", but it makes sense for an unreleased product too.
I guess once they have completed the certification process, it should be fine to use one of these devices :)
 
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hatto

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I am pretty sure it has a 3.5 jack and you can plug in an earpiece or bluetooth , this would make the hearing of someone talking to you quiet but you talking would be heard

"In addition to Milo's integrated microphones and speaker, you can optionally pair Milo with a Bluetooth headset or plug in a wired headset. Milo provides an open voice connection to your group but with a single click you can mute your microphone while still hearing the conversation. Your conversations are encrypted, private and secure and can only be heard by people in your group"
 
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Rob Thomson

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Nov 2, 2016
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This is likely to be interest mostly for residents of Japan (or frequent visitors), but for those of you who use (or want to use) high-powered (5km-ish range) two-way radios in the outdoors in Japan, here's a free English language tool we've put together for registering bought-in-Japan high-powered (~5W, 341Mhz) license-free digital walkie talkies (デジタル簡易無線).

https://hokkaidowilds.org/how-to-register-two-way-digital-kan-i-radios-in-japan-in-english

Put in your details and it'll spit out the Japanese docs you need to send in to your local telecommunications bureau.

You can't register (or use) foreign walkie talkies in Japan, but if you live here, or visit regularly, it could be worth getting a set of Japan-compliant ones (although they're stupidly expensive here).

P.S. "We" refers to us at HokkaidoWilds.org, based in Hokkaido.

standard-VX30-walkie-talkie-two-way-radio-hokkaido-japan-65.jpg
 
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