Japanese Train Wrapping

Japanese train enthusiasts are crazy. I like that! Nowhere else will you find so much maniacally enthusiastically gathered and curated train information.

I follow the daily rundown of Suica Apple Pay train wrappers in vain hope that Docomo iD Apple Pay will run its own train wrapping. Twitter user yatelovelive501 is a great resource for checking what and when wrapped trains are running each day.

It’s great fun and eases the daily commuter train grind.

The Apple Pay Japan Ad Juggernaut

Why are you so slow? Don’t you have Suica Apple Pay?

The Japanese ad blitz that kicked off for the Apple Pay New Life campaign is shaping up as something unprecedented for Apple in Japan. The closest thing in scope, frequency and reach is the famous iPod dancing silhouette campaign at its pre-iPhone peak.

This is much bigger. Think of iPod ad intensity with ten more companies each contributing their own iPod ads. Since the October 29 Apple Pay Japan kickoff, ads have wrapped Yamanote trains, plastered train stations and escalators and that was just for JR East’s Suica Apple Pay.

Now we have Apple Pay ads from Docomo iD, JCB QUICPay, ORICO, Mitsui Sumitomo, Saison/UC, View and of course Suica. Lots more Suica Apple Pay advertising than ever: more wrapped trains, station posters, ticket gate stickers and six ads featuring hot actor Ryuhei Matsuda (son of Black Rain’s Yusaku Matsuda) using Suica Apple Pay on Apple Watch, looking at the camera saying “Let’s Go!” These ads loop endlessly on the Yamanote line train info-screens.

The JR East Suica Apple Pay ads in particular feature Apple Watch Series 2 in action and are enormously effective in a way that Apple’s own Apple Watch ads are not. The Apple Pay ‘ka-ching’ sound going through the ticket gate is the one single killer feature everybody gets instantly. It’s the perfect pitch to Tokyo commuters on the go.

Enjoy the ad gallery.


Ticket Gate Stickers

McDonald’s Japan Adding Full Apple Pay Support


The new ‘World Ready’ Panasonic NFC JT-R600CR Reader
スクリーンショット 2017-03-23 11.25.45
The full spport list

Mono-News Net reports that McDonald’s Japan is adding Apple Pay support in “the latter half of 2017.” The thing is, McDonald’s already supports Apple Pay Japan payments if you have an iD compatible card loaded.

The robust support coming later to all 2,900 stores nationwide is detailed on the McDonald’s Japan press release and includes Suica, QUICPay and, surprise, NFC A/B. In short this means McDonald’s will support Apple Pay across the board for all, from abroad and Japan. It just works.

The reason? Look carefully at the picture and you will see that McDonald’s is rolling out those fancy new Panasonic NFC  JT-R600CR readers announced in February that can do it all: NFC A/B/F (FeliCa) and the accompanying payment systems.

Panasonic is gunning to capture business from the card payment infrastructure investment frenzy related to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Looks like they made their first big catch.

A Shinkansen Trip with Suica Apple Pay

apple-pay-japan_inline-01The iPhone Suica app lets you purchase Shinkansen express tickets and reserve seats. I love using Suica Apple Pay but have not yet had the chance to try it on the Shinkansen. Fortunately Japanese blogger macgeek takes us on a his Suica Apple Pay Shinkansen trip from Tokyo to Ueno with a side trip to a his favorite Chinese restaurant.

His video walks you through the Shinkansen ticket purchase in the iPhone Suica app and his journey from Yokohama, Tokyo and Ueno. He uses Suica Apple Pay on his Apple Watch Series 2 and it is slick. If there is a reason to buy Apple Watch, this is it.

Currently Suica Apple Pay Shinkansen ticket purchases only work for travel on the JR East rail network. JR East is working with JR Central (Tokkaido Shinkansen) and JR West (Sanyo Shinkansen) to rollout complete smartphone compatibility, including Suica Apple Pay, in September 2017.

That Warm Fuzzy Feeling When Puppets Use Apple Pay in Japan

NTT Docomo TV ads are running in connection with the Apple Pay Japan New Life campaign. I never understood the appeal of the d CARD bird mascot puppets but the in-joke that puppets don’t have finger prints to use Touch ID and Apple Pay is clever.

The Docomo iD Apple Pay posters in Shinjuku are also appearing in Tokyo trains. That gold wrapped Docomo iD Apple Pay Yamanote train should be hitting the rails soon.

Apple Pay Docomo iD Ads


The Apple Pay Japan ‘New Life’ advertisement blitz continues with Docomo Apple Pay iD posters plastering parts of Shinjuku JR and other stations.  Instead of the familiar JR East Suica Green, Docomo posters are a very nice gold color that this photo does not do justice to. It’s also nice that Apple has keep the Myriad JP font branding in place for instead of the San Francisco JP font disaster. And of course there are TV ads

I just hope there will be a Yamanote train dressed in Docomo iD Apple Pay gold running on the Yamanote line soon.