NHK reported that Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten, who owns a professional baseball team Tohoku Rakuten Goleden Eagles in the top leagues, purchased the naming right of the home stadium in Sendai, Miyagi prefecture.
The Miyagi Stadium, which name has been Kleenex Stadium Miyagi, will be changed to Rakuten Kobo Stadium. It must be a move for Rakuten to promote its underdog e-book platform Kobo against its rival Amazon Kindle.
An official video explaining Kobo Touch’s feature for Japanese market
Rakuten is having a press conference now, just announced that they release Kobo Touch e-book reader for Japanese market, with a price 7,980 yen ($US 99).
Rakuten, and its e-commerce/e-book rival Amazon announced their e-book readers coming to Japan on the last Tuesday, June 26th.
The sales will start on July 19, pre-order starts today July 2.
Rakuten Kobo supports rubi(readings in katakana) and vertical text display for Japanese market.
Some time on the exact same day when Amazon Japan informed its customers Kindle coming to Japan market, Rakuten, the nation’s largest e-mall platform, is turned out to launch an information site of its e-book reader Kobo, which Rakuten bought November 2011.
The site has a single page with Kobo Touch eReader image, which has been sold in US since last year 2011. Same as Amazon Japan, the page has a button to subscribe mail newsletter.
Although CNET Japan reports [J] tonight that the site was launched June 21, no one referred the site until today on Twitter or other sites. Google Search does not show the URL indexed under the date earlier than yesterday. It seems for me that Rakuten reacted against Amazon Japan’s move. The Kobo’s product photo on the page having the original English contents displayed show that they did not have time to decorate it with more appealing Japanese mock-up.
CNET Japan also tells that Rakuten is planning to have a press conference on July 2, with Rakuten Chairman&President Hiroshi Mikitani, titled “Press conference for e-book business by Kobo”.
via @hiroumi’s tweet [J]