B-Mobile announced the b-micro TalkingSIM Platinum Service and the b-microSIM for the iPhone 4.
B-Mobile seems to be moving towards offering two types of data plans: 1) a symmetric 300 kbps plan with restrictions on streaming for around ¥3000 per month, and 2) a platinum plan offering higher speed, as well as streaming, for about ¥6000 per month. The platinum plan also supports tethering a PC via USB or bluetooth, but at only 300 kbps.
However, there is an issue to overcome: tethering.
The b-micro TalkingSIM platinum allows higher speed access, though not necessarily unrestricted access to Docomo's 7.2 Mbps network, only for certain apps, which are referred to as the "iPhone 4 exclusive network." (The iPad is not listed as supported.) As far as I can tell, any other traffic would be restricted to 300 kbps. This will allow the use of data-hungry apps like youtube and skype, while negating the risk of excessive packet use via a tethered PC.
Of course I would like to see the U300 data-only SIM and the TalkingSIM offered in two flavors, regular and platinum, with no restrictions on platforms (as long as it is certified for use in Japan), and in two sizes, regular and micro, but I don't see how B-Mobile can accomplish this without getting burned in packet costs paid to Docomo.
Here are the whitelisted apps.
- Mobile Safari
- App Store
- Apple Mail app
- iTunes (Podcast)
- YouTube (Mobile version)
- Ustream live Broardcast
- Google Maps app
- ¥3150 one-time new contract registration fee
- ¥6,260 base fee (includes unlimited data)
- ¥1,050 voice fee (25 free included minutes)
- Additional minutes @ ¥21/half minute (same typical rate of the big three carriers)
- No information on SMS price
Pricing for the b-microSIM is the same as their full-sized data SIM, and so is the speed, 300 kbps. I also assume the TOS will be similar, which, if they are, means no credit card and proof of residency required. iPad is not supported Well, perhaps it is and the website simply does not reflect it. After all, we've had a number of reports of chopped down U300's working in iPads.
- 1 year for 29,800 yen
- 6 months for 14,900 yen
- 1 month for 2980 yen.