Living Infomation

Comprehensive Living Guide for Foreign Residents in Japan

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TV, radio, newspapers and internet

TV, radio, newspaper, and Internet are great information sources for your daily life.

  • NHK public broadcasting that is operated by receiving fees paid by all TV viewers, commercial broadcasting that is supported by sponsors, and paid broadcasting that is provided only to subscribers.
  • If you own a television set, you are required by law to pay the NHK receiving fee.
  • There are two kinds of television broadcasting: ground-based broadcasting and satellite broadcasting. There are also two kinds of satellite broadcasting, BS broadcasting and CS broadcasting, requiring specific antennae, a tuner, or a television with a built-in tuner. Cable television is also available by contracting with a regional cable television station.
  • "One-seg (one segment)" broadcasting is a digital terrestrial television broadcasting service that mainly targets mobile phones. While many one-seg programs are the same as standard TV programs, some exclusive programs that are viewable only through the one-seg service are on air. There are several types of one-seg receiving units available on the market, from mobile phones to in-vehicle units to portable units to laptop computers.

Radio broadcasts are available in AM broadcasting, FM broadcasting, and other formats. Since many radio receivers are battery-operated, they are useful in a time of disaster for collecting information.


There are two types of general-interest newspapers covering a wide range of news: the main national newspapers, and locally published newspapers. You can subscribe to have a newspaper delivered, or buy a copy at station kiosks or convenience stores. Some newspapers are available in foreign languages, including English, and can be bought at station kiosks or with a subscription delivered to your door.


There are various methods of accessing the Internet. When accessing the Internet from home, it is convenient to have hardline connections such as optical fiber or ADSL provided by an Internet service provider, or a cable television network.

By using a "mobile Wi-Fi router," which enables users to access the Internet wirelessly, you may also access the Internet on your computer or tablet device from outside your home. You may also access the Internet by using "Wi-Fi Spots" provided at airports, stations, convenience stores and cafés.

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