Softbank Compliment - Best cell company I've ever had.
Back when I was in Japan I picked up a cell phone from a local company - Softbank.
The biggest factor in going with Softbank was that they offered the bill in English for English-speaking customers. The other cell companies didn't.
This company is one of the reasons why I won't ever go with a "real" cell company in America - all of the so-called "real" cell companies fall short of how wonderful Softbank was.
First I'll start with the "bad".
- Full price cell phones. They didn't do deals for "free" phones
- Web browsing was per-packet, stated in English on the contract. if you didn't pay attention to that you could screw yourself over
and now the good. very very good. I had what they called the "white plan" - the cheapest plan available
1) Calls made to any other Softbank phone were free from 2am to 9pm. Yes. **19** hours a day free.
2) Texts made to any other Softbank phone were free 247
3) Calls made to other numbers were 41¥ a minute - bout 41 cents or so, depending on the exchange rate
4) The contract was monthly. That means ... when you wanted to quit the plan you could. There was no ETF.
5) Ringtones - why buy them? This phone let me make my own via the microphone. My 2 favorite ring tones made by holding the cell's mic up to my laptop speakers and playing the song I wanted.
6) But it had some nice ringtones free on the phone anyway. I used one really nice one as an alarm clock
7) The clock worked regardless of signal. Made a nice alarm clock
8) oh and you could send animated pictures in text messages. no extra charge. they had some really cute ones too.
Oh and did I mention the price tag? The "White plan" was 900¥ a month - roughly $9 base rate.
Show me a "real" cell phone company in America that would give that kind of plan....
They wouldn't. And for that kind of plan I was more than happy to pay full price for my phone. Cos I'd rather pay more for the phone and less on my monthly bill... then have a free phone with an expensive bill each month.