Apple appears to overwhelmingly own the smartphone market. Out of ~700 "probing" devices, I saw:
230 Apple 2 Blackberry 3 HTC 3 NEC 3 Sony Ericson 5 Samsung 4 Nintendo 5 Nintendo 3DS
True, many of the "Apple" devices are actually iPads, iPod Touch, and MacBooks. Conversely, some of the devices marked "Quanta" for "Foxconn" could also be phones, but still, as far as I can tell, Apple owns the smartphone market here.
The only carrier providing iPhones is "SoftBank". The other major carriers ("NTT DoCoMo", "au") only recently started selling Androids. They are making a big push for Android phones, but still, it's taking a while to penetrate into the market. Also, I'm down in Kobe -- apparently, Kobe is takes a while to catch onto trends that start up in Tokyo. Maybe in Tokyo Android phones are taking off, but not down here in Kobe.
So-called "smartphones" still lag in Japan overall. The Japanese got e-mail and limited Internet access on relatively "dumb" phones before the U.S. did. In the United States, we made a bigger leap from non-Internet phones to the likes of the iPhone.
An interesting consequence of this, if you do WiFi survey's in the US, you see a lot of WiFi traffic from iPhones, Androids, BlackBerries, Windows phones, and WebOS phones. There are more phones than WiFi access-points. In Japan, it's the reverse. In my casual survey, I found 3 access-points for every mobile device.
A third of all access-points I found were by a company called "Buffalo". That's because home users are more likely to just let the phone company install a DSL modem. Here is an example:
[00:16:01:e5:d6:bd] Buffalo WPA 192693B512BD349D3C2808DD5D3E7D87 [00:24:a5:13:d6:ed] Buffalo WPA2 0024A513D6ED [00:24:a5:b5:b4:a9] Buffalo WPA2 0024A5B5B4A9 [00:1d:73:ab:aa:48] Buffalo WPA2 2CF8BCED01F8D5DE1107CD185D27FFD3 [00:1d:73:ab:aa:4a] Buffalo WPA 2707ABEB1C6C493100527F992E4716FA [00:1d:73:69:ab:5b] Buffalo WEP 558DA3DD4C3D00847D6A99F17B25A66D [00:1d:73:ab:aa:4b] Buffalo WEP 0D196B761E3193084EED9C2032591FFF [00:16:01:2d:f1:89] Buffalo WEP 592E5EC306DA55E03003902270088E23 [00:07:40:c3:14:d5] Buffalo WEP Videoport
In Japan, it appears that customers overwhelmingly leave the default name on the device, which is configured by their DSL provider to be a serial number. In the US, people are more likely to put a name on their access-point.
There are a lot of "FON" devices. This is a company that will provide you an access-point for your home that creates several virtual access-points: your private one for you home, and a public one for other people. In theory, as you roam with your laptop, you connect to free to other people's FON access-points. I don't see these much in the US, but I see them a lot in Japan.
[00:18:84:7d:f1:b8] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:7d:f1:b9] FON FON_FREE_INTERNET [00:18:84:48:e6:54] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:48:e6:55] FON FON_FREE_INTERNET [00:18:84:5b:d2:69] FON FON_FREE_INTERNET [00:18:84:5b:d2:68] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:eb:54:fc] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:e1:d8:80] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:e1:d8:81] FON FON_FREE_INTERNET [00:18:84:d2:e0:a9] FON FON_FREE_INTERNET [00:18:84:d2:e0:a8] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:82:17:0a] FON WPA2 MyPlace [00:18:84:e0:44:d9] FON FON
Mobile hotspots appear to be much more popular in Japan than in the US. About 10% of the hotspots in my survey are these "Warpstar" devices from NEC. They are even smaller than a mobile phone.
[00:3a:9d:69:10:b9] NEC WPA2 WARPSTAR-633459 [00:1b:8b:df:6f:f0] NEC WPA2 WARPSTAR-06E5C4 [00:3a:9d:36:ba:2a] NEC WPA2 WARPSTAR-060875-G [00:0d:02:ec:c9:6e] NEC WEP WARPSTAR-EA34E6 [00:1b:8b:45:22:a0] NEC WEP WARPSTAR-05A55A [00:0d:02:ab:ae:39] NEC WEP WARPSTAR-F7BC25 [00:1b:8b:e4:c5:8a] NEC WPA2 WARPSTAR-55E85D [00:1b:8b:a1:97:34] NEC WPA WARPSTAR-00D3A8
I found these "access-points". I have no idea what they are. Logitec is a well-known company in the United States that sells mouses, keyboards, microphone, and other desktop peripherals. Are they selling a gaming access-point in Japan?
[00:01:8e:ed:55:61] Logitec WEP logitecgameuser [00:01:8e:bc:e0:69] Logitec WEP logitecgameuser [00:01:8e:c3:3b:0c] Logitec WPA2 logitecuser [00:01:8e:c3:3b:0d] Logitec WEP logitecgameuser [00:01:8e:c3:1d:34] Logitec WEP logitecuser [00:01:8e:e8:1a:57] Logitec WEP logitecgameuser [00:01:8e:e8:1a:56] Logitec WPA2 logitecuser [00:01:8e:c6:a9:54] Logitec WPA2 logitecuser [00:01:8e:b7:30:e9] Logitec WEP logitecgameuser