The main thing I was concerned about traveling in Tokyo was not having access to the internet and using google map. I had a few apps on my iPhone that could help me navigate around the city and all but they don't work offline so I was feeling extremely paranoid. And then I remember from reading blogs of other people who have visited Japan that you can rent a pocket wi-fi device to have access to internet on your phone. So I did some research and Japan Wireless wifi rental popped up and I was checking their rates and all and it was actually very cheap and reasonable. Their rate depends on the number of days you rent it for. The longer of amount of days you rent it for, the cheaper it is. You can be paying as cheap as to $1/day for unlimited wi-fi access.
So let me just explain what exactly is a pocket wi-fi?
Basically it's just like a wireless router I would say to describe it. It's a little pocket device you carry with you and you can connect to wi-fi service from your phone.
In the package it comes with an instruction sheet in English that tells you how to connect the device to your phone and it even comes with a portable extra battery. Because what if you run out of battery and the device died on you and you really needed to use the internet to check something (like when you're super lost and can't find your way back to the hotel) then you're pretty much doomed for life. But not when you have a backup battery to save your life! XD But to be honest the battery life is actually pretty good on this thing. You can use it continuously for 9 hours without having to charge it. Although to save and conserve battery life you should turn wi-fi off when you don't need to use it. I only had to charge it every other day when my battery was running low. And they also had amazing shipping delivery service. I ordered the device two days before my flight and requested it to be shipped to my hotel and when I got to my hotel after I landed it was already there waiting for me! Oh I just love how fast and efficient everything is in Japan. ♥
They even provide you with a bag and a prepaid postage mail envelope to return the device at the end of your rental. All you have to do is pack everything inside the zip lock bag and put it in the envelope and drop it at a public mail box that can be found on the street or you can take it to a post office. I just dropped mine inside a mail box near Shinjuku station.
And this is what the device looks like when it's working. The number 2 at the bottom of the screen on the right indicates how many devices are connected to the wi-fi server. You can actually connect up to 10 devices! So if you are traveling with a big group of friends, you can basically all share the wi-fi usage and it'd be super cheap too! I shared my wi-fi with my friend. The speed is also amazing fast and I have never experienced any service failure or signal dropping on me or lagging while trying to load things. I was always connected to the internet everywhere I go in Tokyo. But then again everything is soooo fast and amazing in Japan, I wouldn't be surprised that their internet runs super fast and smooth too. XD
They have different wi-fi router devices that you could rent and this was the one that I picked. It has the fastest downloading and uploading speed and longest battery life. I originally rented it for 7 days only to test it out because I wasn't sure how good it was and I ended up extending it for another 7 days. I paid a total about $80 for 2 weeks so I was renting it at about $5/day. The longer you rent the device for, the cheaper it is and if you share it with a group of friends you can even rent it for a cheaper deal! =D You could even rent prepaid SIM data card to insert in your phone so you can have internet access too but I didn't go for that option.
Overall I was really impressed with this pocket wi-fi rental service. I would definitely use it again for my future trips to Japan. They also do not just cover internet access within Tokyo only but other regions in Japan too! Also, the staffs were extremely polite and they always responded back to my email inquires really fast.
Visit their website for more information: http://japan-wireless.com/