While we are having a blast here in the US with the latest Android-based smartphones, and other countries are waiting anxiously for them to arrive. Japan, apparently, is missing on the Android fun. But all that is about to change, thanks to SoftBank and Sharp.
About a year ago that we had a story on NTT DoCoMo, planning to make an Android-based phone in Japan. This time, Sharp and SoftBank are the ones making waves, first, SoftBank, which is Japan’s third biggest cell phone carrier, announced last week an Android-powered phone for next year. Then, we have Sharp, who just two days ago in Tokyo, promised to roll out a number of Android-based handsets on the first half of 2010. Exactly how many phones? Well, we have no idea just yet.
In Japan, Sharp has the biggest market share out of eight cell phone makers, so, if they really jump in the Android bandwagon, it translates to great news for the Google OS, since Japan is consider the most advanced mobile society in the world. There’s no word from Sharp on which of the three big carriers in Japan will get the Android handsets. But they did say that the features on said handsets, will be unique to the Japanese market. One of the possible specific features might be a tuner for 1seg, which is a digital TV standard used not only in Japan, but also in some parts of South America.