Korea/Japan Week: More cool stuff from the KDDI Design Studio store


I’ve already posted a few things from KDDI’s showcase Design Studio in Tokyo today, but there was plenty more mobile stuff to gawp at. Here’s a few of the highlights, starting with…

Casio Exilim W53CA mobile (above). It has a five-megapixel camera and is clearly rocking the same convergence thang as Sony Ericsson’s Cyber-shot handsets. I wonder if Casio will ever bring this range West.

Korea/Japan Week: Day One Roundup

Today I’ve posted about ten cool things on show at Samsung’s Anycall store, shot a video of its fun touchscreen-based phone recommender, and wondered why removable fascias are enjoying a new lease of life.

I’ve also looked at the problems of DMB mobile digital TV here in Korea, heard that video-calling is just as unpopular as in the West, discovered how you can feed your pet dog or cat via mobile, and shivered at the prospect of The Victim, a musical seemingly influenced by survival horror games like Silent Hill and Manhunt.

Korea/Japan Week: Mobile users "hate" video telephony


Video-calling hasn’t taken off in the West yet, which I’d put mostly down to the fact that once you openly start using it, your boss and/or partner will assume they can videocall you at any time and see exactly what you’re doing, where you’re doing it, and who you’re doing it with.

It’s a slippery slope for anyone pulling a sickie, having an affair, or just going about their business in a private way. And y’know what? South Korea may be one of the most advanced mobile markets in the world, but people there don’t want it either. This is despite the fact that operators and handset manufacturers are keen to tout it as a hot new service.

Korea/Japan Week: Samsung's touchscreen mobile phone recommender

How do you decide what new phone to buy? Well, it depends on whether you drink wine or beer. Whether you put your trousers or shirt on first in the morning. Whether you like handbags or console gaming.

A nifty touchscreen gadget in Samsung's Anycall Studio store in Seoul uses these questions to decide what phone you should buy. See how I fared in the video below (yes, I accidentally said I was a woman). It's hard to see this sort of tech appearing in Carphone Warehouse any time soon, but you never know…

Google gets into mobile payments with Gpay patent

gpay2.jpgY’know what the smart thing about Google’s corporate policy of allowing employees to work on their own projects? Any time information leaks out about something top-secret, the company can say ‘well, people work on lots of personal projects…’ and sidestep the speculation.

That’s what appears to be happening following reports of a patent filed by Google for Gpay, a potential text-message based payments system. In part, it’s the age-old ‘buy a can of coke from a vending machine using your phone’ idea, with added person-to-person payments to tip the greengrocer. I’m loving the accompanying illustrations on that score.