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Google News Joins Mobile Japanese

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Those on the Tokyo subways will have more to do now besides sleep standing up and fend off the pervs pressed up against them. Google is offering its Japanese-language Google News service free of charge via mobile phones.

This will give Google an advantage over other mobile news services, which charge a fee to deliver news to mobile phones, which next to no one in Japan doesn’t have. (I apologize for the previous syntax. It should have said, “everybody in Japan has a cell phone.”)

The service will update news from 30 different Japanese news sources, like Asahi Shimbun and the state-run NHK (which is good if you like boring, incomplete, and culturally insensitive).

The PC-version of Google News Japan carries about 600 news organizations. But, as is widely known, PC-users in Japan are far outnumbered by mobile users. Though Internet cafes are popular.

Google News won’t be the only freely updated service to Nihon’s mobile phones. Google joins the all-you-can-delete porno spam text message distributors. Unfortunately for all the ex-patriots that can’t read Kanji, they won’t know the difference.

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