Connecting a TiBook to Japan's PHS System

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Date: Monday, October 8th, 2001, 12:56
Category: Archive


A reader asks “How can I connect my PowerBook G4 Titanium to a PHS phone in Japan?”

Go2Mac Japan bureau chief Francis Boisvert responds:

There are several options.

To connect your current PHS/Cell phone, you have to get an adapter that plugs into the bottom of his phone and plugs into the USB port on the PowerBook. Apple has included most of the modem scripts for the Japanese phones in the System folder (if you are using a Japanese version of the Mac OS) or you can get those files from someone who uses the Japanese OS.

The PHS phones will get you 64 Kbps access whereas most cell phones will only get you 9.6 Kbps. You have to make sure your ISP supports the PIAFS standard for the PHS phones. Some ISP’s only allow for 32 Kbps but most have upgraded to allow 64 Kbps access.

Usually they have a different access phone number to call to log into this service. If you are using the cell, you probably can use the same phone number your using now to log in but you’ll only get 9.6 Kbps although some new cell phones allow for higher transmission rates.

This is what Jason used to broadcast the keynote address live from Macworld Expo Tokyo two years ago. Also my PHS phone had the direct PC card unit which you can plug into the PC card port on the PowerBooks.

You can also purchase the Compact Flash Docomo P-in Compact wireless modem or P-in Master wireless modem. Edge also makes a similar modem that covers all of Japan. The Docomo units only cover major metro areas in Japan. If you are in Tokyo, no problem. But if you are elsewhere, I’d recommend the Edge unit. They can be purchased for as little as 1,000 yen and I believe retail for around 6,000 yen. But these are CF units so you’d have to buy a CF-USB adapter if you are going to use them with iBooks (5,000 yen).

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