Japan, long called the “Galapagos Islands” of the mobile industry for its cornucopia of sophisticated and unusual feature phones, is finally transitioning to Android and iOS in a serious way. Given the country’s historically high levels of spending on mobile apps and games, it’s becoming a market that Android and iOS developers can’t ignore.
App Annie, a mobile app intelligence firm that started out of Beijing, took an in-depth look at the Japanese market. Ironically, Japan has had a relatively slow transition to smartphones if you consider how advanced handsets were throughout the last decade. At the end of 2011, only 23 percent of handsets being used in the country were smartphones.