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Wireless Infidelity

August 28, 2015


This post is about technology, but it isn’t really technical.

When we got our new apartment one of the items that went to the top of the list was getting internet set up. I needed it for work and really the internet just makes life easier. When you need the internet to figure our your toilet it makes life a LOT easier.

We had a few hoops to jump through before we could apply for an internet connection, but we found out that even after that it would take a couple of weeks to get everything set up. Mostly we had to wait for them to mail us our router and cable modem. Separately.

I couldn’t wait that long to get logged in for work so for a few days I used the very quiet faculty room at Kira’s new school, MST. After my second or third day commuting out to the school for an hour I decided to research my options.

I ended up with a pocket WiFi from Global Advanced Communications. For about the same cost as my train fair I was able to get unlimited data. The site was entirely in English and they mailed the device to our apartment for free. When we were done we dropped it back in the mail in the envelope they provided. As an added bonus the kids now had access to the internet.

As a permanent solution it would be way to expensive and they admittedly throttled you if you went over certain data amounts in a 24 hour period. But as a temporary solution it was excellent. I ran it just about all hours of the day and night for almost a week and only had to reboot it a couple of times. It was a little touchy on charging and I discovered a couple of times that the battery was dead when I thought it was plugged in. If you are visiting Japan I would definitely recommend this as an add-on for your trip. Having access to Google translate and Maps probably makes it worth it alone.

It was easy to deal with the minor annoyances knowing that we had “real” internet coming soon. Eventually our cable modem arrived from NTT and there was much rejoicing. At this point we were not aware that there would be a second box because our cable modem in the US could also act as a wireless router. This was not the case with this device. I spent more time than I should have figuring this out and finally found some comments on a customer service forum about two separate devices. It was OK because I still had the pocket Wifi for at least three more days.

And then a couple of days later, Callooh! Callay!, our SoftBank wireless router arrived. O frabjous day!

Once again I spent way too much time than I should have on this. I got very hung up on trying to figure out the Japanese directions. Also, I know enough about setting up a network to be dangerous so I over thought things. We had gotten all sorts of logins and passwords from SoftBank when we placed our order and I wasn’t sure what they were for. I tried to connect using a cable only to find out that I haven’t updated the drivers for my Ethernet port on that laptop since I upgraded to Windows 8 (who uses a cable anymore?)

Once I ignored all of that stuff and just used the information on the back of the router we were in business.

I think we actually cheered.

And for those of you who care about such things check out this speed test I just ran:

This is for a server in Japan


and this is one in the states


and if you don’t care about such things trust me when I tell you that this internet service is very fast.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Mike Donnelly, Pere permalink
    August 28, 2015 3:17 am

    I have TWC Extreme Internet. My results on the same test website:
    Ping 31 ms: Download Speed 192.26 Mbps: Upload Speed 9.41 Mbps.

    What’s NTT costing you?

  2. Janet Koplos permalink
    August 28, 2015 1:45 am

    Twas brillig of you!

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