I know that iPhones are sold in Japan now. Does this mean I can use my US iPhone in Japan and call Japanese numbers?
Thanks in advance!
The original iPhone will not work in Japan. Japan has already migrated to 3G cellular networks and shutdown their 2G networks. Japan also never had a wide spread EDGE (GSM 2.5) network. The iPhone 3G will work, as it is being sold there.
Yes, you'd need a new 3G iPhone, and your service provider would also has to have a roaming partner in Japan. Even if you have one, the call charges might be very expensive. Check with your home provider about roaming services. You might find it easier to rent a phone in Japan locally.
As posted, 3G iphone will work fine.
You have to pay roaming fees for any calls. Docomo and Softbank generally have roaming agreements. Softbank is the vendor for iphone in Japan.
I recommend you turn off data roaming - the roaming fees can add up to $0,000's if you use email (with attachments) and other data services. The roaming fees for data are outrageous.
My iPhone is 3G. I'll call AT&T and see how expensive it's going to be. I might have to stick with renting a phone and going to internet cafes.
Bumping up this thread. Any updates on recent attempts to use a U.S.-purchased 3G iPhone (from AT&T or Apple) in Japan? Not unlocked and using AT&T for service in the U.S. I have asked AT&T, but have found on other matters that not all service representatives have a common understanding of what is possible and what is not. Sometimes, better to ask about personal experience. Thanks.
A U.S. iphone will work in Japan, roaming.
However, I highly recommend you don't do this, unless you are willing to pay enormous sums for data roaming. iphone uses a lot of data to download mail attachments, etc etc. By enormous sums, I mean in the thousands of dollars.
My advise is to turn off data roaming when you arrive in Japan. iphone becomes just a voice and sms phone at that point.
Yamanote is right. Date roaming is extremely expensive!! For example, 2MB of date (downloading a 3 minute video or an email with 5 pictures) costs about $40 USD each. Just imagine how much you end up paying for all those forwarded emails with bunch of pictures attached.
When you leave the US, the setting for international date roaming should switch to the off position by default, but double check when you arrive in Japan.
I have a 3G iPhone but I don't use it in Japan. I rent a cell phone and go to internet cafes to check my emails.
International iPhone Data Roaming package:
I knew about the package--they give you the info when you buy an iPhone. But in my case, it's much less expensive to rent a cell phone and use internet cafes. Besides, some internet cafes are fun to visit. My favorite one in Shibuya offers all kinds of free drinks and all you can eat soft ice cream ;-)