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

Discussion in 'Japan' started by Sandy, Dec 3, 2013.

  1. Lifes2good

    Lifes2good One of Us

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    We almost always ski with friends and find we use our phones quite a lot for meet-ups, making arrangements etc. I also text my mum a few times a day while I'm away, so she doesn't feel like I'm too far away (she is elderly and not well).
     
  2. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    That's what I'll be doing again with my Aussie phone (I have Boost Mobile) this season - just put $10 monthly credit on it while I'm away. I don't answer the phone and just call back/text using Skype which is linked Oz no.
     
  3. GlenH

    GlenH Addicted Ski Pass: Silver

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    Thankyou for all of the useful replies, much appreciated.
     
  4. Stratus

    Stratus A Local

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  5. Stratus

    Stratus A Local

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  6. Tonester

    Tonester One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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  7. hatto

    hatto One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    17700yen 60 days, unlimited data. Japan wireless
     
  8. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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  9. hatto

    hatto One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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  10. Melskius

    Melskius Addicted

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    For those in the know... how has the coverage of pocket wifi been with japan wireless? Thinking of using them over global advance this trip - just concerned about coverage in naeba, matsumoto, takayama, kanazawa. Mostly just through the mountains. Any issues?
     
  11. hatto

    hatto One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I have only used iiyama. Nagano. Nozawa. Myoko areas but have had no issues at all.
    It has worked great.
     
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  12. Born2ski

    Born2ski Part of the Furniture

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    Love them, but I use their pocket wi-fi. Used it for 4 trips to Japan, currently using it in Tomamu. Two reasons I like them over others, plans that have no daily limits on data usage and they use NTT Docomo which have great coverage throughout Japan.

    As above I've used Sakura wifi router on a few trips now and the only place I've had it drop out is in train tunnels. No problems at Naeba, even works on the 5.5km long Dragondola across to Kagura.
     
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  13. Stratus

    Stratus A Local

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  14. Stratus

    Stratus A Local

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    Its the best value one I found for visitors.
     
  15. Tonester

    Tonester One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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  16. Chillybin

    Chillybin Addicted

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    I’ve always used global advanced communications. Been awesome in 7 trips now. Pick up from the post office at the airport and drop off in the post box when leaving. No idea if there is better or worse but I’ve never had many network issues even in the backcountry.
     
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  17. shepski

    shepski Addicted

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    I got the 5gb for our trip this year, worked well so will probably use them again next year. Had it delivered to to the hotel and dropping it in the post at the airport is pretty simple.
     
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  18. Tonester

    Tonester One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yes. I had excellent reception everywhere I went. No issues. And the convenience factor of having it waiting at the hotel also helps.
     
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  19. Stratus

    Stratus A Local

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    Based on advice here I used them for my 3 wk trip to hokkaido and kyushu. Straight forward to set up and no issues with speed or connectivity for the whole trip. Really pleased. Had the card delivered to hotel, easy.
     
  20. Melskius

    Melskius Addicted

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    Just wanted to add - on advice from here, we have been travelling with the ivideo wifi. The 501 version has been great in Naeba, Matsumoto and Takayama so far.
     
  21. Sage Oya

    Sage Oya Like the herb, lover of Pabst, cup ramen devotee Ski Pass: Gold

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    We used the Biglobe ninja sim purchased in oz from ablenet pty Ltd on Pitt street Sydney in the city. Runs on the Docomo network, $50 for 3 gig data only and rechargeable online with a credit card. Worked pefectly for us. 3 gig each lasted us 30 days combined with using hotel WiFi
     
  22. Mark*V

    Mark*V Hard Yards Ski Pass: Silver

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    I've just read this entire discussion. My daughter has a medical condition. If she gets injured (serious injury such as knee, not for anything minor) I need to provide her with medication asap. She will be boarding with her brother, I will be skiing elsewhere. As far as I can tell the easiest and cheapest way to communicate will be to turn roaming on our mobile phones. We will only be using it in the case of an emergency, so we will only be charged for those calls made. Will there be coverage at Hakuba on the mountains? Or do I need to buy a Japanese walkie talkie set? I have read that these are available in Tokyo however I would prefer not to stop in Tokyo as that will mean we will arrive in Hakuba late in the evening. What are my options?
     
  23. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    We've used roaming on our phones in Japan and its fine. The reception on Softbank was decent enough in Hakuba.
    Just turn off your data roaming.
     
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  24. Mark*V

    Mark*V Hard Yards Ski Pass: Silver

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    Thanks. I'm thinking about using the Optus and Vodafone roaming, will that work?
     
  25. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah.. we used Optus before
    The Vodafone one..You can spend $5 a day extra and get basically your plan overseas.
     
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  26. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I have heard though the Vodafone one is SLOW data wise.

    When we did it with optus..I made a few calls etc ...took some calls and it added $11 to my Bill.


    I actually prefer a pocket wifi.(and call through messenger etc)..but thats another kettle of fish
     
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  27. skichanger

    skichanger A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    There are coverage maps. Might require a bit of searching to find them though.

    Will be softbank or NTT Docomo
     
  28. Nozawaman

    Nozawaman A Local

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    This hasn't been my experience with Vodafone , the data uses whatever it is connected to in that country . For us in Nozawa we connect to Docomo . I just returned from Bali where I hot spotted my phone to use local 4G for internet , as the wi fi at my accommodation was crap .
     
  29. Undies

    Undies Pizza! Ski Pass: Gold

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    Depends on the telco. Telstra has agreements in place which get you “4g” in lots of countries, but the pipe is throttled so you only get a couple of mb speeds which is barely 3G. I was in Italy a few weeks back and regularly got 500kps, which is utter piss for $10 per day.
     
  30. hatto

    hatto One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    From other thread
    Japan wireless with portable WiFi about $170 for 62 days last season, unlimited data, worked everywhere from tokyo to nigata, myoko, joetsu, nagano, Nozawa and many obscure places in between.
    Super fast 10 devices, extra battery delivered to accom or airport, drop in post when finished - win
     
    Lucky Pete likes this.
  31. alferg

    alferg Hard Yards

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  32. azzski

    azzski Should know better Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    This seems like an extraordinarily good deal. No data limitations, DoCoMo network, no speed limitations. An entire month is $52.

    I'm wondering what the catch is. Is it 3G or something?
     
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  33. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    According to terms and condtions, it uses NTT Docomo's Xi and FOMA.
    Xi is LTE (4G) and FOMA is 3G.

    If that's the case, it's a really good deal.
     
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  34. azzski

    azzski Should know better Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    They ping you $6 for delivery to Australia, but I can live with that!
     
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  35. alferg

    alferg Hard Yards

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    Yeah I couldn't quite believe it when I stumbled upon it. Such a great deal.
     
  36. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    only issue - my Oppo ain't on tthe list
     
  37. azzski

    azzski Should know better Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    My Samsung Galaxy S8+ isn't on the list either - but it's an unlocked Android phone that takes a nano sim. I can't see how there'd be a problem. I can't imagine an Oppo would have issues either. I think the list has not been updated in 2 years is all.
     
  38. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Its got the new fancy Oppo on there
    I agree with you though
    Ever get the vibe the Japanese don't like the chinese or korean tech? or cars for that matter
     
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  39. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    Good find. Will buy one for my teen who can't go 5 minutes without dying of wifi withdrawal.
     
    alferg likes this.
  40. PMG

    PMG One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    HTC10 isn't there either.
     
  41. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    The Japanese telco companies are anal about testing that all "approved" phones will work, so customers don't complain if they don't work.
    We had a 100 modified #Phones on continuous cycle tests just for that reason in our test lab, and another 200 Androids.
     
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  42. Tonester

    Tonester One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    That's a great deal. I've just ordered one.
    The last couple of years I've gone with sakuramobile.
    But that was about AUD $100 for 10 Gb for a 2 week period. This is way better.
    I
     
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  43. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    It's pretty frikken awesome.
    I presume you can hot spot as well?
     
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  44. Tonester

    Tonester One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    And gobsmackingly quick delivery too!
    So, I ordered the SIM on Wednesday night. I just arrived home to find in it in the letterbox.
    Only in Japan!
     
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  45. PMG

    PMG One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Was your phone on the list Tonester?
     
  46. Tonester

    Tonester One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    iphone xs...yep!
     
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  47. PMG

    PMG One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    No such luck here.
     
  48. M_G

    M_G M_G_ = Make skiing great again Ski Pass: Gold

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    My daughter's phone (Lenovo Z9) is not on the list but not sure why it wouldn't work. It's just a regular sim card. Or am I missing something?
     
  49. Rowdy1

    Rowdy1 Hard Yards

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    You need to look at the frequencys that your phone supports vs the ones that the provider broadcasts in. They may broadcast in none of the frequencys that your phone supports, especially in rural areas.
     
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  50. Rowdy1

    Rowdy1 Hard Yards

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    Born2skii likes this.