PrePaidGSM > Operators > Japan


Useful things to know:
Prefix: +81 JP
Money: 1 Japanese Yen = 0.008529 Euro
Electricity: 120V - 50-60Hz
Time Zone: GMT+10

3G Operators

NTT DoCoMo, Inc
DoCoMo Prepaid Card Name: -
Activation Fee/Credit included: -
Card Validity after activation: -
Net Frequency: W-CDMA 2100
Logo, Net Code: NTT DoCoMo, 440 10
Coverage Map: GSM-World
Prepaid offer: -
Last update: -
Softbank Prepaid Card Name: SoftBank 3G Prepaid Service
Activation Fee/Credit included: JPY 105/day - € 0.67 (only rent)
Card Validity after activation: as long as you use it
Net Frequency: W-CDMA 2100
Logo, Net Code: Softbank, Vodafone JP, 440 20
Coverage Map: GSM-World
Prepaid offer: click here
Last update: 21/01/09

Prepaid in Japan

In Japan prepaid services are really not widespread and it's not possible for foreigners to buy any prepaid card. Softbank just started the first 3G Prepaid offer on February 4th 2008 and it's available to foreigners which are not resident in Japan only renting a phone and/or a sim-card for the days they are staying in the land of the rising sun.

PDC, CDMA2000 1x Ev Do and W-CDMA

Japan as always been quite isolated talking about mobile phone technology. Their extensive 2G networks are in the PDC standard, which is not used outside Japan, while they have a CDMA (upgraded to CDMA 2000 1x Ev Do) network as well (KDDI) which could be good for some foreigners coming from Korea or America, but not for the big GSM public. In the last years NTT DoCoMo and Softbank (formerny Vodafone) are building their new W-CDMA 2100 networks, which have a good coverage in bigger towns, but still lack behind the 2G networks throughout the country (and inside buildings and metros).