Monday, June 11, 2012

Internet connection

Japan is on the CDMA network, so GSM phones cannot work unless they are 3G phones in whcih case they connect exclusively on the 3G connection. At least, that's what I understand.

That means if you have a 3G phone, and you have access to the internet, you can data roam if your telco has an arrangement with the Japanese Telco.

However, it looked expensive to me and limiting. Singtel only has Softbank as their preferred partner, so we hook up to Docomo or other telcos' net, the standard rates will apply.

Moreover, the data package is in 4 hour blocks. This is further limiting. Sometimes we just want to log on with maps when we're lost or use the location service on our iPhone. If we used data over a 5 hour period in a day, we would have incurred $14. Assuming we stayed on Softbank. I seem to recall that Softbank coverage in Hokkaido is practically non-existent.

Pupuru seemed to provide a good option. It provided a mobile Wifi which allowed up to 5 devices to connect to the internet, and it was unlimited data. The charge came up to about Y16,000 or about $260 for the 2 weeks or about $20 a day. Between the 2 of us, we had about 5 devices. So it worked out well. If the duration of our use was within the same month, we would have saved some money too. Check out the cost breakdown below.

> ----- Breakdown -----
> Plan M size:\8,400 [ \8400/Kit(s)]
> Plan SS size:\3,150 [\3150/Kit(s)]
> Required Fee:\1,575 [ \1575×Kit(s) ]
> Postage:\1,050
> Airport Delivery:\840 [ \840×Kit(s) ]
> Insurance:\1,050 [ \1050×Kit(s)/30days ]

I was quite pleased with the product. The connection was generally good in towns and cities. Only in the quieter more rural areas would there be no signal. The battery could last about 6 hrs it seemed with intermittent use. Up and down load speeds were fast.

We got the Emobile set with the faster speed, though it seems to have a smaller coverage (in Hokkaido at least). But that was fine.

With this, we did not have to depend on free wifi or free LAN internet in Hotels. One payment and peace of mind.

We collected the set at Narita Airport. We could not locate any service counter called Pupuru, so we asked information, and she directed us to a freight company counter.

Returning the set was simply enclosing everything into the supplied envelope and mailing it. We handed it over at the post office at Narita Airport International Departures, next to the Starbucks.

No fuss. No muss.

No comments:

Post a Comment