The KDDI Design Center's Futuristic Concept Phones and Less Impressive Regular PhonesAdam Frucci10/23/07 11:00amFiled to: Japanese Cellphone DesignCellphonesJapan AdventureKddiJapan16EditPromoteShare to KinjaToggle Conversation toolsGo to permalinkIn Harajuku, near the bridge that all the socially awkward cosplay teenagers hang out on on Sundays, is the KDDI Design Center, a temple dedicated to Japanese phones. Inside they've got all of this year's KDDI phone models, a display on futuristic phone concepts, and every phone offered by the Japanese carrier on display for potential customers to get their greasy fingerprints all over. One thing that surprised me about Japanese cellphones is how boxy and not-that-thin they all are. Almost everybody has the same type of phone, a rectangular flip phone, and none of them are as thin as something like the Helio Fin. Instead, due to features such as DMB mobile TV reception, they require bulkier batteries as to provide longer life. While I was expecting a wonderland of super-thin, amazingly-featured phones, I'm actually pretty underwhelmed. Sure, being able to watch mobile TV is kind of nice, but the TV stations here kind of suck. I'd rather have a thinner phone than DMB TV service.