iAds, iTunes Store movies coming to Japan

Apple has announced not one, but two huge products set to launch in Japan -- iTunes movies and iAds. Movies first. To start, there will be over 1,000 movies available for purchase and download. Movies will be available in standard definition and high definition. As usual, all rentals and purchases will require a valid credit card on file with iTunes, nothing new there.

HD rental prices start at ¥300 while new release rentals will run ¥500. SD rental prices are ¥200 and ¥400 respectively. Purchases prices range from ¥1,000 to ¥2,500 depending, of course, upon whether they are HD or SD and whether they are an older title or a new release. For those keeping track, ¥2,500 is about $30 USD. This seems pretty pricey to me. Right now, titles like Toy Story 3 in HD are only $19.99 on the US version of the iTunes store. Do these prices for Japan seem high to anyone else?

Aside from movie purchases and rentals, Apple is also extending their highly successful iAd service to Japan as well. The Dentsu Group in Japan will be responsible for selling and executing iAd while Apple will deliver the ad content to customers. The Dentsu Group is one of the most successful brand agencies not only in Japan, but in the world.

Andy Miller, Vice President of iAd had this to say about the rollout -

“After an incredibly successful launch in the US where we’ve already doubled the number of brands on the network, we’re excited to bring iAd to Japan,”...“Dentsu is one of the world’s most prestigious advertising agencies, making them an ideal partner for iAds in Japan.”

It's good to see Apple is extending more of the more sought after services to other parts of the globe. Any of our readers in Japan have any thoughts? What do you think about the iTunes Store pricing for movies?

[Apple iAd Press Release, Apple iTunes Press Release]

Allyson Kazmucha

Editor for iMore, Potter pundit, and the ninja in your iOS

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There are 4 comments. Add yours.

parabel says:

Movie sales/rentals have also started in Switzerland today. But with everything only available in (badly synchronized) German instead of the original languages, I certainly won't ever use that.. :(

Andrew says:

I was always under the impression that prices in general and living costs were higher in Japan, but is it really comparatively that much more?

tyrran says:

Apple has really got to be careful. Rentals are still HUGE in Japan, and various rental shops (Tsutaya and GEO, to name a few) are very popular and frequented for not only movies but also music. This might appeal to the Tokyo crowd, but I think rentals might flop in the overall market.
The purchase price is about right though, so I wouldn't worry too much about that. Buying movies has always been ridiculous in Japan.

NAT says:

US movies with Japanese dubbed are really interesting. If you are not in Japan, you can buy Japan iTunes prepaid cards from http://www.japan-codes.com to rent movies from iTunes Japan Store.