Google Map almost thrice as popular as iPhone’s own Map


This survey from TesTee Lab looked at iPhone mapping apps.

I’m on Android, but I’d be lost (groan) without Google Map. I’ve only tried Yahoo! Map through web sites like Facebook, but I’ve not been impressed. In Japan, Google is very bilingual-friendly (too friendly sometimes, as it sometimes searches in the wrong language) and the memory of places one has previously visited is exceptionally useful. The trains are full of adverts for NAVITIME, and it looks good and exceptionally detailed, but although it claims to be free for basic features, I worry it will be nagware, so I’ve never bothered trying. Its vehicle navigation features appear to be almost as good as dedicated car navigation systems, but as I only drive when I rent a car, and the cars come with navigation as standard, I never bother with smartphone apps.

One thing I did learn from the report was the abbreviation NPS, Net Promoter Score, which is a value indicating how much people love or hate a particular brand, etc. I’m not sure how useful the figures are in this case, so rather than report the exact numbers, I’ll just summarise the outcome (hint: people hate Apple’s stock app).

Here’s why you want to use a map app when you’re in Japan; this is just a fraction of the Tokyo area lines – the subway and all private lines are missing for a start:

Japan Rail Tokyo

Then again, I survived quite happily long before apps were ever invented; kids today, bah humbug!
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Little buzz on Google Buzz in Japan

Have you used Google Buzz? graph of japanese statisticsI’ve been hoping such a survey as this one from iBridge Research Plus, reported on by japan.internet.com, on Google services but focusing on just Google Buzz, would appear, as I’ve wanted an excuse to write about Google Buzz.

Demographics

On the 22nd of February 2010 300 people completed a survey; 52.0% of the sample were female, 14.7% in their twenties, 43.0% in their thirties, 28.0% in their forties, 10.3% in their fifties, and 4.0% in their sixties.

Just in case you don’t know, Google Buzz is Google’s attempt at a social networking service based around their core offerings including Gmail, Google Reader, and Google Chat. However, it launched into a storm of privacy complaints and for me, although I didn’t notice any privacy issues I certainly did notice it imposing itself into my Google Reader window, showing me far too much stuff from my contacts’ activities without any way to easily ignore. I soon turned it off, but I might go back in a couple of months to see if they have added any controls to only show me my friends when I want to see them.
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Yahoo! Search pulling away from Google; Bing nowhere

Recently iBridge Research Plus conducted a survey, reported on by japan.internet.com, into search engines.

Demographics

On the 5th of February 2010 300 members of the iBridge monitor group completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 51.0% of the sample were female, 18.7% in their twenties, 33.3% in their thirties, 26.3% in their forties, 12.7% in their fifties, and 9.0% in their sixties.

I’d never heard of 百度, Hyakudo before, but a Google (what else!) search informed me that it’s actually read Baidu, the Japanese version of China’s top search engine.
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Google Street View for theme parks in Japan

Have you used Google Street View? graph of japanese statisticsWith a great deal of fuss regarding privacy in Japan related to Google’s Street View, resulting in them promising to reshoot everything but from a lower camera angle, this recent survey from iShare into Google Street View found that virtual walkthroughs of theme parks was a popular feature that should be expanded.

Demographics

Between the 20th and 25th of May 2009 569 members of the CLUB BBQ free email forwarding service completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 58.2% of the sample were male, 35.7% were in their twenties, 29.7% in their thirties, and 34.6% in their forties.

In May of this year Google announced a Street View Partner Program to allow private facilities such as theme parks and other tourist attractions to invite the Google Trike to pedal through the location. In Japan, Kyoto’s Kodaiji temple and Asahigawa Zoo in Hokkaido were among the first locations to sign up.

It was not reported in detail, but the most popular places people wanted to see photographed were Tokyo Disneyland and Universal Studios Japan.
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Debito.org for sale

Yes, debito.org is taking money from ambulance chasers and other dubious sources, despite a statement on http://www.debito.org/donations.html that: I also do not wish to clutter the site with sponsored advertisements. Such links would certainly not be acceptable on What Japan Thinks (I’ve refused a couple of lucrative but unethical offers), Read more…