Believe it or not I still haven’t got internet connection though I have been here for over a month. In Japan, cell phone, internet connection, and bank account are the most hesseling things you could ever imagine. Why? First, you need to have one of these before you can get the next so it is like an RPG game in which you have to beat small potatoes first, then the boss at the corner before you can get to the headquarters of the gang ring to fight with the head. In Japan, you need to have a bank account before you can apply for different things, say, cell phone and internet. But before you can have a bank account, you need an alien registration card. Before you have the stupid card, you need to have a work visa, and before visa, it is Certificate of Landing Eligibility you need!
So, until you get your internet or cell phone, it can take you up to 2 months and I ain’t joking. In Australia, it works the same as other developed countries – all you have to do is to hit the store and buy a SIM card and use the code on the card to activate the service, and the whole process can take as little as 10 mins and no questions will be asked! (of course, you need to buy / have a cell phone in the first place). Also, the telephone charges here are whopping, especially long distance. It takes you as much as 1 USD to call major countries in Asia such as the Phillipines, China, Taiwan, even if your using a collect card. It also normally costs you over 30USD a month to make a few local calls, suppose you’re a low user. Compared with Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, you will usually only have to pay half as much.
So I got my internet connection finally and it is Wifi. Many people here use a portable Wifi gadget for internet access so you can go online at home or outdoors (suppose you have a laptop or tablet), which means that you can get internet connection wherever you go as long as there is wifi singal, which is different from the situation in Australia and HK in which people usually use their cell phone to go line outdoors and landline while indoors. One of the major reason I think is because using the Wifi gadget here costs you pretty much the same as landline but if your using portable Wifi you are not restricted to using internet only at home and this is why it beats landline internet.
UPDATE on the Wifi (27 May)
When I got this device at the shop, I asked the assistant to check if my area is covered by the internet signal and she called the centre to confirm with me that it worked in my area , yet it turned out to be a disaster. Over the last couple of days, I either couldn’t get any signal at all or the speed is very slow(you can imagine what it is like if it takes 2 mins to load the homepage of Hotmail). I originally thought it was because I didn’t get the settings right or the signal was weak indoors or it got interfered by the TV signal, so I took tons of hours to find a spot where I may be able to get a better signal but to not avail and I got fuming! I even tried the balcony which is right in front of a vastly open area and roads but I could barely use the internet. So I went back to the store at 10am when they opened and asked to talk to the assistant that serviced me on that day but she wasn’t around. So I returned them everything including the contract, wifi device, charger, and the box!