Athlete’s foot and other self-medication in Japan

I used to have athlete’s foot, but Japanese over-the-counter medicines cured it pretty promptly and it has never returned, mainly due, I suspect, to living in much more hygienic conditions since I got married! To find out about festering feet in Japan and other issues, Yahoo! Japan Value Insight conducted a survey into what is known as switch OTC medicines, which means medicines with active ingredients that have switched from being prescription only to being also sold Over The Counter.


Between the 13th and 15th December 2007 600 members of the Yahoo! Japan Value Research online monitor panel successfully completed a survey. Exactly 50.0% were male, and 33.3% were in their thirties, 33.3% in their forties, and 33.3% in their fifties. Each age group was also split 50:50 male and female. In addition exactly 50.0% had used OTC medicines for athlete’s foot within the last six months; I presume that these users were evenly distributed by sex and age.

I better have a short disclaimer just in case: I am not a health professional, and nothing within this article should be taken as medical advice, or even as accurate information. Please consult a doctor or pharmacist before taking any medicines, even over the counter ones, in order to avoid drug interactions or other problems. Mentions of any products or links to external sites does not imply a recommendation or a vouching for the quality or even safety of the products or sites.

Here’s a tasteful picture of (an) athlete’s foot or two:

Air Jordan XII - Taxi's

Baseball is Japan’s favourite sport

Which baseball team do you support? graph of japanese statisticsRecently, Yahoo! Japan Value Insight, in conjunction with Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting, took a close look at sports. The full report seems to have lots of interesting information, but this publically-released article contains just the highlights, although these in themselves have some interesting answers.


Between the 1st and 4th of September 2007 2,000 members of the Yahoo! Japan Value Insight Questionnaire Panel completed a private internet-based questionnaire. The group was split 50:50 male and female, and the ages of the respondents ranged from 15 to 69.

One may notice that the traditional national sport of Japan, sumo, does not feature in the top five of Q1

I also found it interesting in Q10 that compared to men, women were more interested in schoolboys than grown men, as it were. High school baseball and the high school golfer found more favour with the females questioned.

Jack Sparrow defeats Hans Solo and Harry Potter in Japan

Last year, how many times did you go to the cinema? graph of japanese statisticsAccording to recent news, in 2006 Japanese movies took in more revenue at the box office than foreign films for the first time for 20 years, although it must be noted that the cinema-going frequency in Japan is still much lower than most of Western Europe and the USA. To understand more about Japanese habits, Yahoo! Japan Value Insight recently performed a survey on this topic of film consumption.


Between the 10th and 24th of August 2007 Yahoo! Japan Value Insight published an open survey through the menuing system of NTT DoCoMo’s iMode mobile phone menuing system. 3,604 people self-selected themselves to take part in this survey; 57.9% were female, 5.6% in their teens, 30.3% in their twenties, 41.2% in their thirties, 19.3% in their forties, and 3.6% aged fifty or older.

The movie rankings in Q5 are rather interesting; I never understood why Japan loved Armageddon so much, both men and women, it seems. Men chose just one Japanese live-action movie in their top ten, whereas women chose three Ghibli animations, for instance.

One may also note that Q1 does not include downloading off the internet, either through legal or illegal channels.

Oh, and although Jack Sparrow defeated Hans and Harry in this poll, Japan Probe recently reported on him surrendering in the face of a bunch of cute kids.

Japanese salarymen have small yet sturdy and long-lasting ones

How satisfied are you with your notebook computer? graph of japanese statisticsOne thing one may notice after being around Japanese salarymen is that their tools of the trade, as it were, are much smaller than that of the average American business-person, but they still do pack quite a considerable punch and they are rather proud of the features of their home-grown models. I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether or not the headline and the preceding sentence have anything to do with a recent survey conducted by Yahoo! Japan Value Insight on the subject of notebook (laptop) computers and Japanese businessmen.


Between the 3rd and 8th of August 2007 Yahoo! Japan Value Insight gathered the opinions of 16,526 members of their online monitor panel. All were male, and the sample had almost exactly 25% (plus or minus two people) in each of the age bands of twenties, thirties, forties and fifties. 14,037 of the sample, or 84.9%, went on domestic business trips at least once per month. This group was asked Q1. In addition, a smaller group of 2,000 businessmen registered with mpack, the mobile monitor group of Yahoo! Japan Value Insight, who went on business trips at least once a month carrying a notebook computer were asked the more detailed questions Q2 to Q8. This group was made up of 500 people in their twenties, 500 in their thirties, 500 in their forties, and 500 in their fifties. Note that business trip covers both day trips and overnight stays, or even just visiting another branch of the same company in the same city.

There’s a mass of fascinating data in this survey! For instance, Q1 on what people take with them on business trips; old guys prefer carrying a digital camera to a notebook computer; indeed why do almost three in ten take a digitial camera with them?

Although Panasonic loses out badly to Apple in the portable audio player battlefield, here they beat everyone in terms of sales and are only just edged out by the Mac in terms of user satisfaction.

Finally, I must add that I am another satisfied Let’s Note user.

Two in five iPod owners want both the iPod Touch and the iPhone

How satisfied are you with your iPod? graph of japanese statisticsJust when you thought the survey companies (and this web site too, it must be said) had flogged Apple’s yet-to-be-released-in-Japan iPhone to death, along comes the new iPod Touch and a new excuse to look at Japan’s love affair with Apple’s portable devices. First out of the starting gate was Yahoo! Japan Value Insight with a detailed survey on Apple’s iPod Touch.


Over the 8th and 9th of September 2007 400 people from Yahoo! Japan Value Insight’s online monitor pool answered a private internet-based questionnaire. All respondents owned portable audio devices, from digital players to CD players, MD players, and even cassette players. The group was split 50:50 male and female, but no details on the age profile was given.

Note that the full survey covered people’s existing players, the iPhone and the iPod Touch in more detail.

Note also that the question the headline answers refers more to a desire to be in possession of the two new devices rather than a specific willingness to turn up at a store with cash in hand.

Most Japanese look at job information, free magazines main source

Have you ever looked at job vacancy information? graph of japanese statisticsThis is the first in a pair of separate but related surveys; this one by Yahoo! Japan Value Insight is a serious look at the job hunting market, with the next being a lighter look at for what reasons do people change jobs by goo Ranking.


Over two weeks from the 13th to 27th of July 2007 3,387 people chose to complete a public survey offered through the menus of NTT DoCoMo’s iMode mobile phone service. 58.9% of the sample was female, 3.8% in their teens, 29.8% in their twenties, 43.2% in their thirties, 20.4% in their forties, and 2.8% aged fifty or older.

I don’t know if it’s the self-selecting nature of the sample, but there seems to be a rather larger than expected percentage of the population interested in new jobs.

Where I mention “full-time, regular job”, I mean those currently unemployed, whether due to redundancy, re-entering the labour market, or those seeking their first job after leaving education.

Billy Blanks’ Boot Camp bigger than the iPhone

Do you know of 'Billy's Boot Camp'? graph of japanese statisticsIn an attempt to jump onto two bandwagons at once, I couldn’t resist that headline to go with recent research from Yahoo! Japan Value Insight (ex-INFOPlant) on weight loss diets. The results presented below are just the highlights of the full report consisting of twenty-one questions, ten on diets in general, eleven on Billy’ Boot Camp in particular.


Over the 27th and 28th of July 2007 400 members of Value Insight’s online questionnaire panel successfully completed a private questionnaire. The sample was exactly 50:50 male and female, and 25.0% in their twenties, 25.0% in their thirties, 25.0% in their forties, and 25.0% in their fifties.

The title of this article comes from comparing the awareness figures for this survey versus the awareness of another big thing in Japan, the iPhone. About seven or eight in ten have heard of the iPhone, whereas 85% have heard of Billy Blanks’ diet; indeed in the key female dieting age range from 20 to 49 over 99% of the women have at least heard his name!

One in four Japanese iPodders want to be iPhoners?

Would you change carrier in order to buy an iPhone? graph of japanese statisticsWith all the survey companies keen to jump on the iPhone in Japan opinion bandwagon, here comes the latest offering from the company formally known as infoPLANT, Yahoo! Japan Value Insight with their take on Apple’s iPhone in Japan.


Over the 25th and 26th of July 2007 400 members of Value Insight’s online monitor group were chosen to take part in a survey. They were split 50:50 male and female, and similarly the age distribution was 20.0% in each age group teens to the over fifties.

The report below is of the highlights of the survey; the full details of all 13 questions can be purchased for 50,000 yen, or 100,000 yen if you want the raw data too.

I find it interesting in Q5 that people want to spend not more than 22,655 yen, or under 200 US dollars, on the handset, well under half the price in the USA. Will we see a premium pricing plan for the iPhone in Japan?

Fruity favourites

Godzilla Egg watermelon
One of the latest fads in fruit these days seems to be the above “Godzilla’s egg”, an egg-shaped watermelon weighing in at a good few kilograms. As for me, one thing I miss in Japan is a real pear-shaped and pear-flavoured pear, not the watery apple-like thing that is all too common. Melons seem to missing something too, and don’t get me started on other entertainingly-shaped watermelons. However, I can’ t think of a smooth seque into a recent survey conducted by Yahoo! Japan Value Insight (ex infoPLANT) into the subject of fruit.


Over the 29th and 30th of June 2007 300 members of the Yahoo! Japan Value Insight internet monitor panel completed an online questionnaire. Exactly 50:50 were male and female, but age groups are not listed, although these sorts of surveys from Value Insight tend to have the numbers in each age group evenly distributed.

You know when you’ve been in Japan too long when you order grapefruitS juice when speaking English.

There were also a few bonus facts added to the report. The full survey was 19 questions long, but just the highlights are in the translated article.

When buying Chuhai (cheap fruit-flavoured alcoholic drinks) rather than price it was flavour that was most important.

The survey was conducted a week after Snapple Peach and Rose Tea went on sale, and 13% were curious about the mix of peach and rose.

About one in three women were interested in buying high-quality fruit juices.


Mobile phone applets

In the future, how might your iAppli usage change? graph of japanese statisticsI keep wanting to download more games to my phone, but being a stingy git I never quite get round to it. In theory, since wifey has an unlimited packet deal (I keep telling her to use her phone more!) she can download and move to an SD card, then I can move it off the SD card onto my own phone. I must try that sometime. In the meantime, let’s look at a recent survey conducted by Yahoo! Japan Value Insight (ex-infoPLANT) on this topic of mobile phone applications, in particular NTT DoCoMo’s iAppli.


Between the 4th and 22nd of June 2007 (this must be a misprint as the text says the survey was conducted over one week) 6,031 people, 57.6% female, self-selected themselves and completed a public questionnaire available through the NTT DoCoMo iMode menuing system. Note that the self-selecting nature of the survey attracts a high percentage of people on unlimited data download plans.

There’s a puzzle game I’ve seen a few people playing that I’d like to get hold of – the idea is to draw a picture in a 20×20 grid or so with a set number of blocks available for each row and column. Does anyone know what this is called? I also had fun doing a Kakuro in a copy of the Guardian I picked up on holiday, so I should search out an electronic version of that too.