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[* Updated with new plan information]

Sorry for all the iPad traffic lately. Rest assured we are still keeping our eagle eye’s out for other mobile coverage in Japan.

But the moment we have been waiting for is here.  Softbank has announced pricing for the iPad and iPad 3G, as well as details on two 3G connection plans, a monthly unlimited plan and a pre-paid option.

So let’s take a look at what we have got.

First of all, you will have a choice of paying up front cash, or buying on a two year installment plan.

So pricing for an iPad Wi-fi only model in cash would be

16GB: 48,960,  32GB: 59,040, and 64GB 68,880

Using installment ups it a bit at

16GB: 53,280, 32GB: 63,360, and 64GB 73,200

Pricing for the iPad 3G model with the prepaid plan would be

Cash purchase

16GB: 61,920, 32GB: 72,000, and 64GB 81,840

monthly installments (24x)

16GB: 66,240, 32GB: 76,320, and 64GB 86,160

If you sign up for a two year contract for unlimited data, Softbank will eat the interest for you so there is no difference between cash purchase price and installment plan.  So the 3G model on the monthly unlimited data plan (2 year contract)

16GB: 58,320, 32GB: 67,920, and 64GB 77,280

see the full price chart with detail here

Note that all iPads come with two years of free access to Softbank’s Wi-fi hotspot service (after two years the cost will be 490 yen/month).

Next we have the data plans.  You’ll have to sign up some data service in addition to purchasing an iPad to use Softbank’s 3G data network.

Softbank is offering their standard unlimited data plan of 4,410 yen a month, however if you are using an iPad, you can receive a 1,500 yen a month discount dropping the monthly charge to 2,910 a month.  I assume this means that if you pop out your micro SIM and somehow get it into a computer or other device you risk losing your discount.

There is also a monthly prepaid service that offers you up to 1 GB of data that you can use for up to 30 days.  This will cost you 4,410 yen a charge.  This is not as great a deal and if either 30 days pass or you use your 1GB of data up (whichever comes first), you will need to recharge your plan.  You can set this up to work automatically, but that could lead to some scary charges if you somehow download a lot of data.

Remember, pre-orders start on Monday, May 10 at 10 am.

and as for Docomo, no official word.

*UPDATE 5/9: Thanks to community member ketahi who found information on a third data plan.  It seems that in addition to the 1GB prepaid plan, there will be an additional 100MB prepaid plan offered starting July 1.  This plan will cost 1,510 yen per month and people who sign up for the 1GB plan will be able to swap over to the lower plan when it becomes available.

press release with more detailed plan information

So what do you think of the pricing for Japan?  Send us your comments!


UPDATE 5/10: All you need to know in order to pre-order an iPad

Follow our complete iPad landing in Japan coverage

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