Discussion: Outside of Japan, adjusting to life viewed through a mobile device is still in the early stages, but in Japan, it is second nature. Near field communication is transforming travel in the populous island nation with mobile apps to pay for a Tokyo bus, streamline a domestic traveler’s airport experience to 15 minutes, and even translate your restaurant menu into English. As Japan looks for foreign tourists to generate much needed revenue, travelers can rent a Japanese smartphone to download all the local applications without the heavy cost of doing so with their own phones. Their ultimate goal: your own personal concierge in your pocket, complete with personal tips on where to eat and directions to get there.
Source: BBC News
Date: April 28, 2011
Questions for discussion:
- Why are the Japanese described as “super-reliant and worshipful of convenience?”
- As the Japanese travel industry creates more applications of tech for travel, what assumptions is it making about tourists?