Finally! Tokyo to Get Cellphone Service in Subways!

It never seems to fail. I could be sitting around at home or in the office all day and not get a single phone call to my cellphone (not really complaining), but sure as the sun will rise in the East tomorrow morning, the moment I get into a subway train, and the door closes, someone will call me.

As soon as the train leaves the station - in between stations - there's no cellphone reception in Tokyo. 

But that's all going to change this year!

CNN reports:

Users of the iPhone in Japan have long had one grievance to share -- the poor lack of signal on phone giant Softbank's network.
Walk underground or stand in an elevator and you can expect the line to go dead on any Softbank phone, let alone on a moving subway train. Of course, one should never speak while in the carriage, but for those wishing to download news or send text messages, each tunnel is a frustration.
Tokyo Vice Governor Naoki Inose and Softbank president Masayoshi Son agreed at a meeting at the municipal head office to resolve the issue whereby a phone signal can be found in the passageways under the city, but not while moving between stations -- affecting millions of commuters.
According to the Mainichi, Son "proposed that e-mail use be enabled in subway trains because doing so would raise people's productivity."
The antennas will be paid for by a consortium of the three telephone giants, Softbank, NTT Docomo Inc and KDDI Corp, so should serve all phones, and could be up and running by the end of 2011.
I don't really want to talk to people on the trains, but would love to be able to read the news on the Internet or check stock prices or watch Youtube.
I hope they do arrange this as soon as possible. It looks like Osaka will have this service in 2012!

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Anonymous said…
Softbank sucks and everybody knows it. Then again, look at who's running the company...
salil said…
Partly the problem arises due to the company u keep......
Mass transit systems all over the world would gain a few points , it woks......
Oligopolistic competition is the backbone of the middle-class tax cut 2011.....

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