Line Corporation’s CEO Morikawa on fast and furious global expansion

In the opening session of B Dash Camp Fukuoka 2013, we had a chance to hear from the CEO of Line Corporation, Akira Morikawa. The company’s popular Line chat app now boasts over 140 million users around the world, and over 45 million in its home market of Japan …

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A new crop of smartphones for spring

As spring descends on Japan, we’ll all be welcoming warmer temperatures and cherry blossoms in the coming weeks. But spring in Japan typically means new smartphone lineups from Japan’s major mobile carriers, too. And while consumers’ love for Apple’s iPhone is still in full bloom, there are …

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The announcement I wish Nintendo would make

This morning I stumbled across M.G. Siegler’s post on the death of Nintendo, which he says has been “greatly under-exaggerated.” Like Siegler, I’m a fan of Nintendo. But I don’t think they’re completely dead. There is one final Hail Mary pass that I think Nintendo …

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A fine line: Shantell Martin projects freestyle performance art

At a recent FITC event in Tokyo I had a chance to hear renowed artist Shantell Martin speak about her artwork, as well as her connections to Japan, a place that has played a central role in her development. Her work is sometimes so simple that it resembles doodles that …

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YouTube opens its third global space for video creators in Tokyo

Located a few floors below Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) high-rise Tokyo office, the internet giant today announced a brand new space dedicated to video creators in Japan and the Asia Pacific region. It’s new YouTube Space in Tokyo is the third of its kind for the company in the …

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Rage of Bahamut and Japan’s quest for global gamers

One of the biggest Japan-related tech stories from 2012 was the success of Cygames’ social card battle game Rage of Bahamut on DeNA’s Mobage network. Whether or not Japanese social games can succeed in markets abroad is a very interesting question, and Bahamut so far is perhaps the most …

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2012 in tech — and what it means for the year ahead

In the world of technology, the past year has seen a changing of the guard in almost every sector. Personal computers, mobile devices, gaming and Internet services have all seen incredible developments, with new challengers taking the place of old incumbents. As we move into the new year, we’ll …

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Myojo Waraku: Startups Converge on Fukuoka for Japan’s Rendition of South By Southwest

This weekend in Fukuoka, Japan’s answer to South by South West, Myojo Waraku, took place, spotlighting artists, music, and up-and-coming startups as well. As a part of the ‘startup showcase’ on day two of the event, ten startups from Japan and around Asia took to the stage to pitch …

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Japanese companies aspire to take a bite out of the e-reader apple

With so many competitors in the tablet and e-reader market these days, it’s getting harder and harder for manufacturers to differentiate themselves from similar offerings. Apple’s iPad held 68 percent of the worldwide market share in the second quarter according to Massachusetts-based research firm IDC, while Samsung and …

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How Rakuten’s Global Expansion Began With Baby Steps in Taiwan

An interview that I had with with the CEO of Rakuten Taiwan Yuichi Ejiri, who explains a little about how the Japanese internet giant executed its first venture abroad.

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Average Global Internet Connection Improves, Still Dwarfed by Asian Speed Demons [Map]

I dove into an Akamai dataset of broadband internet speeds for each country, by quarter, going all the way back to 2007. Using a combo of Google Fusion Tables and the Google Charts API, I whipped up this map (see below), which features bar charts showing quarterly internet speeds (in …

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After European Acquisition, 99Designs CEO Talks About Asia Plans

Earlier this week design marketplace 99designs acquired European rival 12designer for an undisclosed sum. For 99designs, this marks an important step in its expansion in Europe, of course, but what about the company’s plans for Asia? We got in touch with CEO Patrick Llewellyn to find out how 99designs …

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Chinese Gaming Giant The9 Making Mobile Moves, Thinking More Global

Having already established itself as a powerhouse in the PC online gaming space, Chinese gaming company The9 (NASDAQ:NCTY) is now looking to change with the times and already has a decent foothold in the newer game spaces of mobile, social, and web. Its social gaming platform, The9 Game Zone …

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Making the move away from smartphone snaps

For aspiring photographers looking to step up their game from a point-and-shoot camera or smartphone, there have been a number of exciting new options released in recent weeks. Whether you want to take the leap to your first DSLR, opt for a more evolved point-and-shoot, or go with something in …

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Weighing up ultra-thin new laptops from Japan

Over the past few weeks we have seen a barrage of great new laptop offerings from PC manufacturers, all hoping to deliver thin, light, and powerful mobile-computing solutions driven by Intel's new Ivy Bridge processor.

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DoCoMo shuns iPhone, pushes Android options

DoCoMo last week unveiled its new lineup of mobile phones at a press conference in Tokyo. The most notable was the brand-new Samsung Galaxy S III, the headliner of the DoCoMo NEXT series of high-end smartphones.

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Cuba deals Russia blow with five-set win

Hamamatsu, Japan, May 20, 2012 - Defending World League champions Russia suffered their first defeat of their 2012 campaign on Sunday as Cuba picked up a 3-2 (23-25, 25-17, 25-20, 18-25, 15-10) victory in yet another classic Pool A match in Hamamatsu, Japan. Cuba was led in scoring by their young …

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Serbia hands Japan second five-set loss

Hamamatsu, Japan, May 20, 2012 - Japan suffered their second five set loss in as many days on Sunday after being narrowly beaten by Serbia 3-2 (22-25, 25-21, 25-27, 25-19, 15-12) in Pool A of the FIVB Volleyball World League in Hamamatsu. Serbia was led by the young Aleksandar Atanasijevic who …

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Russia narrowly avoid shocking loss to Japan

Hamamatsu, Japan, May 19, 2012 - Russia followed up on their tough five-set win over Serbia on Friday with another challenging 3-2 (20-25, 25-23, 25-16, 19-25, 15-12) win, this time over hosts Japan in Tokyo in Pool A of the FIVB Volleyball World League. Leading Russia was the hard-hitting Pavel Moroz …

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