Apple should team up with local companies to solve Maps dilemma
News On Japan via Japan Times -- Oct 17
In Japan, where addresses are rather complicated, people had become highly accustomed to Google Maps' detailed direction-search function and Apple Maps has been a significant downgrade from what Japanese smartphones users expect from such a service.
Such mishaps as the duplication of the disputed Senkaku Islands and the inclusion of a train station bizarrely called Pachinko Gundam have been widely reported, but there are many other Japan-specific problems. These include major landmarks being located up to 400 meters from their actual position; maps that are not up-to-date (for example, am/pm convenience stores are still marked despite the chain being taken over by Family Mart in 2009); new roads and buildings are missing (including the absence of the huge new Shibuya Hikarie complex in Tokyo's Shibuya shopping district); the 3-D mode shows distorted shapes for well-known points of interest such as Tokyo Tower; and some place names are shown in Korean or Chinese instead of Japanese.
The number of people who committed suicide in Japan in 2012 was 27,858, dropping below 30,000 for the first time in 15 years, the Cabinet Office said in a white paper on Tuesday. The figure was 2,800 fewer than in 2011. (Japan Today )
A collection of materials related to a 17th century mission sent by a Japanese feudal lord to Europe and the world's oldest autographic diary left 10 centuries ago by a Japanese regent have been selected for the UNESCO Memory of the World registry, the Japanese education ministry said Wednesday. (Global Post )
Almost 1,500 people were transported to hospitals by ambulance due to heatstroke last week, up sharply from 942 in the preceding week, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency said Tuesday. (Japan Times )
Among about 200,000 traffic signals nationwide, 16 percent are being used beyond the end of the expected lifetime of their electrical systems and some have even toppled over due to age, according to the National Police Agency. (Yomiuri )
In May, Akira Ikoma, the editor of a guide to men's entertainment called Ore no Tabi (My Journey), said that "Abenomics" had caused a spike in prices at high-end soapland bathhouses in Tokyo. However, the same editor tells Shukan Post (June 28) that the initiative is not impacting the low-end market in the same way. (Tokyo Reporter )