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Sharp and KEPCO to build out PV farm June 23, 2008

Posted by fukumimi in Energy, Japan.
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Sharp and KEPCO (Kansai Electric Power Company) have announced that they will be building out a 28MW PV farm starting 2009. The plant will use Sharp’s thin film PV modules, and will occupy the roof area of Sharp’s Sakai 10G LCD/thin film PV plant as well as an adjacent landfill site owned by Osaka prefecture.

The plant is expected to be operational in 2011.

JP press release (no English PR at time of press)

The completed facility will generate just under 30GWh/yr.

We only need another seven hundred thousand or so of these facilities to take care of our energy needs for the next generation. Assuming moderate economic growth, it looks like we’ll need about 20TW of additional carbon free energy production capacity by 2050, and whilst I’m sure other sources of power will also be tapped, solar will probably play some role.

I’m guessing building out 20,000 nuclear power stations is out of the question. 20,000 over 42years is more than one new plant commissioned EVERY SINGLE DAY between now and 2050….

Some additional thoughts on the SB/iPhone news June 4, 2008

Posted by fukumimi in Internet, IT, Japan, Mobile, technology.

We can stop talking about 3G iPhone  “rumours”. Since SB (and all other Japanese carriers) no longer have legacy 2.xG networks which are actively adding users, a Japanese launch must be equated to 3G. 3G only or 3G+GSM, that is now the question.

Coming just one day after SB’s launch of their ’08 summer collection, one has to wonder what impact the news of iPhone’s launch at some time in the future will have on SB ’08 summer handset sales will be. Given that the two other major carriers have also begun marketing their ’08 summer models, the timing of this announcement could be seen as a spoiler tactic targetting users who might have been thinking of upgrading their phones on rival networks. Many of the upgraders this season will be upgrading into the newly introduced 2-year fixed term contracts for the first time, so this would appear to be a good time to tempt users to switch with a unique offering. IF the iPhone will be a pure SB offering, of course.

SB’s summer ’08 collection launch yesterday was notable for its focus on young women. Women are apparently underrepresented in SB’s customer base, and the announced handset lineup was heavy on models targeted towards women. This may offset the negative impact of the iPhone announcement, a quick strawpoll conducted around the office seemed to suggest that the iPhone will appeal more to techy, geeky young men. The fact that the iPhone form factor and capacitative touchscreen interface isn’t optimal for single handed use especially with long manicured nails counts against the iPhone in the Japanese F1 demographic, for sure. So, targeting women with their summer models and guys with the iPhone may be valid.

iPhone to be sold through Softbank Mobile in Japan June 4, 2008

Posted by fukumimi in Internet, IT, Japan, Mobile, technology.

Softbank Mobile’s press release here.

No specifics on timing of launch, price, exclusivity, etc.

The phone hasn’t been through the JATE approval process yet, so it’ll be at least a couple of months before we see it in the shops, based on the usual timelag between JATE approval and products hitting the shelves.