The boom appeared to have been fueled by a development having nothing to do with culture or novels but by cellphone companies’ decision to offer unlimited transmission of packet data, like text-messaging, as part of flat monthly rates. The largest provider, Docomo, began offering this service in mid-2004."Packet death." I love that. And I wonder how things would change here in the US if packet data were made unlimited at no extra fee. (Currently I pay Sprint, supposedly the worst US mobile service provider, an extra monthly fee for unlimited SMS and data.)
“Their cellphone bills were easily reaching $1,000, so many people experienced what they called ‘packet death,’ and you wouldn’t hear from them for a while,” said Shigeru Matsushima, an editor who oversees the book uploading site at Starts Publishing, a leader in republishing cellphone novels.
Thumbs Race as Japan’s Best Sellers Go Cellular - New York Times
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