Wannabe Mac Convert - but stuck in Japan. Anyone bought from Apple Japan?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by askywalker, Aug 18, 2007.

  1. askywalker macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2007
    Does anyone know how different the Japanese keyboard is to the US keyboard for the Macbook Pro? I have searched and found flickr photo links, but they aren't working any longer.

    I have an urgent need for a new notebook, and find myself suddently stuck in Japan for a month or so. I have been eyeing the Macs at the apple store in my hometown. Apple and Toshiba seem to have the only true 'global warranties', and are easily accessible.

    If I wasn't stuck in Japan I would probably be buying a Dell - the XPS. Dell will sell me the computer here, but I need it in the next couple of days - Dell takes too long.

    I will probably take a trip to Tokyo tomorrow and pick up a MBP. If the Japanese keyboard isn't so different, or is easy to change after the fact, I could go to the local electronics store (Yodobashi Camera) and get the non-glossy screen MBP for a hundred and fifty bucks cheaper than the true Apple Store... Also would save me a hundred bucks in train rides.

    I am a complete Mac noob - so I am a bit nervous to be trying to learn it while travelling, but hoping sites like this will help me transition from Windows...
  2. synth3tik macrumors 68040


    Oct 11, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    I have never had the pleasure of being "stuck" in Japan, but I am sure the keryboard has both English and Japanese symbols on it. You also should be able to get a standard "US" keyboard. Have you checked the Japanese Apple online store?
  3. hawaiian macrumors member


    I did. And the keyboard is different, but not that different. Play around with one.
  4. razyorv macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    Try asking if you can get the US keyboard, not the japanese. I remember I heard somewhere that in Japan, you can swap it if it's the MBP for free.
  5. Kaiser Phoenix macrumors 6502

    May 12, 2005
    Hi, DONT get the Japanese one.

    I am Japanese and I thought the Japanese keyboard will be useful as I can switch between inputting modes quickly but the Japanese keyboard has 1 major flaw.

    The flaw is that the start position of your hands, ie when you are about to start typing, is slightly shifted to the right, meaning the palm of you hand will slightly be touching the trackpad. What this means is that while you are typing away, there will be instances of your palm moving the cursor around which will be quite annoying.

    So dont get the Japanese one.

    If you go to any Apple store Ginza, Shibuya, they will change it for you and it roughly takes 30 minutes to do so.

    I wish I was STUCK in tokyo too, im in the UK now...
  6. Noonzio macrumors member

    Jan 24, 2007
    Dublin, Ireland
    The Apple Japan store (online) will sell you a MacBook with a US keyboard. There are a number of Apple retail stores and I assume you could also get one with a US keyboard from them. Any of the 'Camera' stores, i.e. BicCamera in Yurakucho, also sell Apples and you will get 5 or 10 per cent 'points' back on your purchase which you could then use to buy a bag, etc. Either way, the Japanese MacBook has both Japanese symbols and the Western alphabet on the keys.
  7. razyorv macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2007
    More than one, actually. I used to own a mac with a Japanese keyboard and the spacebar is super small!

    Too much clutter and it's an eye-sore in my opinion.
  8. ShiggyMiyamoto macrumors 6502a


    Mar 29, 2004
    Just outside Boston, MA.
    Whoa. WTF. That looks like a "Clamshell" iBook G3. Am I right?

    Also, why are the Control and Caps Lock keys swapped? Also the :apple: and option/alt keys are swapped too... o_O


    Kaiser Phoenix, I think I can see what you mean.
  9. Genshiken macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2007
    Spent more that a few paychecks with Apple Japan

    Yes, ordering from Apple Japan is pretty easy just do your order choose English or Japanese keyboard and the rest is easy. My fist preference is the Japanese keyboard as it get you used to the keyboar you would be using most everywhere else in Japan.

  10. skubish macrumors 68030


    Feb 2, 2005
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    I have been to the Ginza Apple store severals times, they will swap keyboards.
  11. askywalker thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2007
    Thanks everyone - this advice encouraged me to get the US keyboard. Since I NEEDED it for tomorrow, I ended up taking the shinkansen to Tokyo and buying a nicely decked out Mac Book Pro 15" ... Working on it now, trying to figure out this whole new world of Apple. :p

    By the way - none of the Apple stores would send me a computer (ie: buy it over the phone). The online ordering was the only way I could get it sent by takyubin (courier?), but they would not ship it for 7 to 10 days. I needed it today, so spent an extra couple of hundred dollars (and several hours) and took a trip to Ginza. The store was amazing though - I made an appointment with a shopping consultant - also with an English speaking translator. They were great. I knew I could get it at an electric store with a discount - but Ginza and Online Shopping told me that they would not change a Japanese MBP keyboard to English anymore - no matter how much I paid. They did end up throwing in a free year of Mac Ultra Care or something like that - not even sure what it was but they said it was 90,000 YEN.

    For some reason my IME keeps switching back to Japanese. I can force it to stay English (or Romaji?) by unchecking the Japanese as data entry options, but I would like to switch occasionally - does anyone know how I could convince my Mac that I want US English as a default input source?

    I seem to have a ton of other questions - but I will keep trying to figure more things out myself for a while.

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