Photos: Phone fun in Japan

KDDI's seasonal phones. The company comes out with a summer line, a spring line and an autumn/winter line each year, with each fashion line containing about 10 to 12 phones. A typical Japanese consumer swaps cell phones about once every 12 to 18 months. People used to swap more often, but the carriers changed pricing structure so it pays to keep a phone longer. Typically, carriers garner about 8,000 yen ($7.25) per customer per month in revenue.

Michael Kanellos/CNET

By Bill Detwiler

Bill Detwiler is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and the host of Cracking Open, CNET and TechRepublic's popular online show. Prior to joining TechRepublic in 2000, Bill was an IT manager, database administrator, and desktop support specialist in the ...