British airline Virgin Atlantic has begun an eight-week trial of Sony wearable technology within its engineering department for maintenance and repairs. The trial is being conducted at the airline’s busiest airport, London Heathrow. The aim is to ascertain how the technology can be used for “real time communication between the engineering team on the aircraft and in the engineering support areas”.
Pertino, a company reinventing networking for the mobile and cloud era, today announced the launch of a Japanese sales channel for its SDN-powered cloud networking service through a distribution partnership with SoftBank Commerce & Services Corp. (SoftBank C&S). This is the first major partnership in Japan and the second inked under the company’s BlueSky Partner Program—launched in September 2014—following last quarter’s announcement of an alliance with Dell to integrate and resell Pertino’s Cloud Network Engine service within the Dell Cloud Marketplace.
As Nikkei reported last week, Tokyo-based Crowdcredit, a startup behind a peer-to-peer lending platform focused on financing emerging markets under the same name, officially announced on Monday that it has fundraised 200 million yen ($1.7 million) from Japanese trading house Itochu. According to the Nikkei article, Itochu has taken an 18% stake in the lending company, so the latter’s market cap is valued at over 1 billion yen ($8.4 million).
Today, Indonesian jobs information site Qerja announced that after just eight months in operation, the company has secured a series A funding round from the SB ISAT Fund, a collaboration between SoftBank and Indosat. The amount of the round was not disclosed, but Qerja is calling it “one of the highest Series A valuations of any Southeast Asian startup.” The round, it says, puts Qerja at an eight digit valuation. Previously, Qerja was supported by a seed round raised from Mountain Kejora Ventures (formerly known as Mountain SEA Ventures).
BARCELONA: Japan’s NTT DoCoMo and Nokia said on Monday they are working together to develop networks running at high frequencies for use in the 5G wireless era — technology expected to be showcased at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile operator, and Nokia, the world’s third biggest telecom equipment maker, said they will be demonstrating their early technical progress on 5G radio equipment at the Mobile World Congress show here this week.
BARCELONA, Spain ― KT, the nation’s second-largest mobile carrier, said Monday that it has teamed up with China Mobile and NTT DoCoMo to jointly develop the fifth-generation or 5G network technology. “KT has agreed with China Mobile and NTT DoCoMo of Japan for co-development of 5G mobile technology. The agreement calls for joint marketing to promote new telecommunications technology,” KT said in a statement on the sidelines of 2015 Mobile World Congress (MWC) exhibition here.
HackOsaka 2015, held earlier this month in Osaka, featured a pitch contest where 10 startups pitched their services and products. The event was hosted by Osaka Innovation Hub (OIH) and Osaka Economic Strategy Bureau. I would like to introduce prize winners and other presenting startups. mClinica CEO Frouk Meralli is originally from Canada but now based out Manila, the Philippines.
More than a year after it first hit Japan, Line’s standalone ecommerce app has finally arrived in Taiwan. Currently available on Android, Line Mart features the same interface as Line Mall, its analogous Japanese counterpart. Users can browse through an assortment of categories like clothing and electronics, to find an item they’re interested in. Buyers can “heart” an item they like and leave messages for sellers.
India’s startups have been mostly looking West for investment cash, but this is changing. Last year was an inflection point when Masayoshi Son, founder and CEO of Japanese telecoms giant SoftBank, visited India and announced plans to pump US$10 billion into India’s “information revolution.” Two-thirds of the first billion from SoftBank went to Snapdeal, to help it compete with ecommerce leaders Flipkart and Amazon. And nearly a quarter of a billion went to taxi app Ola to take on Uber.
NEW DELHI: Samsung and Sony’s flagship smartphones of 2014, Galaxy S5 and Xperia Z2, are now available for less than Rs 3,000 on e-commerce websites in the country. The South Korean manufacturer will launch the update to Galaxy S5 on January 1, while Xperia Z2’s successor has been in the market for nearly six months. Flipkart is selling the Galaxy S5 for Rs 28,999 (US$ 470), while Xperia Z2 can be bought for Rs 29,900 (US$ 485). On other e-commerce websites, such as Amazon and Snapdeal, the models are still priced at more than Rs 30,000.
Manila-based Yoyo Holdings, the Japanese-led startup known for its mobile rewards platform Candy, announced last week that it has launched a lock screen-based rewards platform for Android users in Indonesia, called PopSlide. The app is available on Google Play in Indonesia. The platform distributes news, weather forecasts, other updates, and ads to your smartphone lock screen. In return for viewing such information, users receive rewards for free Internet access on their smartphone.
Bandai Korea unveiled new online and mobile games using cartoon intellectual properties “Gundam” and “Digimon” in Korea, Thursday. Gundam is a sci-fi television anime series depicting giant robots and Digimon is a cartoon and video game content about creatures in an imaginary digital world. Both Japanese media contents have garnered significant popularity around the world.
NTT Communications Corporation (NTT Com), the ICT solutions and international communications business within the NTT Group (NYSE:NTT), announced today that it has constructed an ICT backbone and information system that Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Santen) will use as core ICT infrastructure to support its goal of becoming one of the world’s top three providers of medicines for prescription ophthalmic solutions. The hybrid-cloud environment combines NTT Com’s branded services for cloud, data center and network, which are globally centralized for efficient system management and supported with a globalized multilingual help desk for Santen employees.
IT services and technology provider, NEC Australia, is on a growth path after transforming its business last year and securing a string of major contract wins. NEC Australia said it expects to continue along the path of its strong growth trend with plans to invest in the local market. Last year, it signaled a $25 million investment into establishing a new office within the University of Wollongong’s Innovation Campus, creating about 110 jobs in the area.
TOKYO, Feb 23 — “How many people came for video games?” asks a keynote presenter at Sony Corp.’s PlayStation bash in Las Vegas last December. The crowd roars. “And how many came to give Shu Yoshida a hug?” The roar gets even louder. The man in question is an unlikely celebrity. Short and bespectacled, the 50-year-old Shuhei Yoshida is president of Sony’s worldwide game studios. What he’s done to draw such affection is champion some of the biggest hits in the business and prove people will pay US$70 (RM255) for top-notch titles even in a world with thousands of free smartphone games.
Hitachi Data Systems is set to acquire SAP Cloud service provider, oXya, in a bid to extend its portfolio of managed Cloud services. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of March and is subject to customary closing conditions. Upon the close of the acquisition, oXya, with more than 500 employees, will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi Data Systems and will continue to execute its current business model under oXya vice-president and chairman, Frederic de Belloy, reporting to Hicham Abdessamad, HDS executive vice-president, Global Services.
Last week, Adways sent around a press release hinting it would reveal that its overseas business became profitable. Today, in its latest quarterly earnings announcement, the firm confirmed as much. Known for its online and mobile ad network, Adways expects revenue of JPY 5.4 billion (US$45.4 million) against an operating profit of JPY 70 million (US$588,000) for the fiscal year.
Mixi is showing interest in the world outside Monster Strike, the game that saved the firm and turned it into a billion dollar company. Today, Mixi announced it acquired Muse & Co., an ecommerce site targeting high-end shoppers. The Bridge is reporting an acquisition price of JPY 1.76 billion (US$14.8 million).
TOKYO — KVH Co., Ltd., headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, in collaboration with Ciena, today announced the success of a field trial for 400 Gbps data transmission over KVH’s fiber-optic network between Tokyo and Osaka. This field trial represents the first successful data transmission at 400 Gbps over live fiber-optic infrastructure in Japan and solidifies KVH’s position as the leading innovator in Ethernet technology in the Japanese market.