I'm planning a trip to Japan this summer, and I'm trying to figure out how to get WiFi access for my netbook or iPad which I will bring with me while I travel.
Although my hotel(s) advertise internet access, I have found this doesn't always work and is often only wired-access - so I wanted to find a flexible alternative "just in case".
So far, my research has shown that:
(a) There are very few free-access hotspots, but many "paid" hotspots in the areas I will be going
(b) McDonalds seems to have huge coverage, and some other places (Tully's, Starbucks, MOS Burger) seem to be inconsistent
(c) Paid-hotspot access seems to be via a few major carriers:
- MobilePoint BB
- Softbank BB
- NTT Docomo
The best I can determine from these:
- MobilePoint, Softbank, and NTT Docomo seem to be geared toward Japanese residents who already have a broadband or cellphone account with these carriers (ie. I can't get this)
- iPass seems to be geared toward international, large-company workforces rather than individuals (ie. I can't get this)
- Boingo will possibly work, with a $7.95/mo recurring account for this access (which is apparently hard to discontinue), or $1.99/hour pay-as-you-go credit system on iPhone/iPad (the only apparent option for me at this point)
Does anybody else have information to share on this ?