Michi nails it

In Japan, attention to detail is often important not just in traditional Japanese craftsmanship, but also in all manner of modern goods — even false nails.

Michi is a new e-commerce website that specializes in plastic nails hand-decorated by 100 designers from all over Japan.

There are more than 350 types of different nail designs and the website adds about 10 new ones every Friday. The beauty of false nails is that they are reusable, and at ¥1,900 to ¥2,700 per set, they are actually reasonably priced. Plus, with free home delivery anywhere inside and outside of Japan, there’s no need to head to a salon.

jp.michimall.com Michi Instagram: @michi_nails

Coffee straight from the bean

If you can’t start your day properly without a good cup of joe, this is something for your wish list.

The Siroca Crossline is produced by Japanese manufacturer AucSale, and it can make coffee literally straight from the bean.

All you need to do is add some beans and water and then press the start button. The coffee mill is inside the machine, so it will freshly grind the beans each time. Coffee aficionados will know that this prevents the coffee from becoming acidic.

The Siroca Crossline can make up to four cups of coffee and is planned to hit the market in Febuary at ¥20,000 for the STC-501 stainless steel version and ¥15,000 for the STC-401 glass version.


Casio’s latest pro pitch

Casio has added a new camera to its EXILIM digital camera series. Designed for professional use, the Ex100-Pro can take high-speed (60 pictures per second) photographs, has a continuous shooting function and takes videos at 1,000 frames per second. Up to seven EX100-Pros can also be synchronized via a LAN network for multiple-angle shooting.

High-speed photography may not be useful for everyday snapshots, but for those interested in artistic or sports photography and filming, and people who need good imagery to document research and design or laboratory experiments, this could prove a useful piece of hardware.

Co-developed with Kyouwa Giken, a company that manufactures a baseball-pitching machine called Topgun, it has the makings of being a hit.

The EX100-Pro is slated to be priced at around ¥120,000 and will be released this month at the e-casio online shop.


A Handiii new startup

A startup project residing in the hardware incubation lab DMM.Make Akiba, Handiii is a prosthetic hand designed by Exiii, a team of three engineers. It’s still in its early stages, with the prototype being refined with the cooperation of two potential specific users.

What makes Handiii different to conventional prosthetics is that its not designed to be a life-like hand. Instead, Handiii is deliberately robotic in appearance and focuses on function.

Built using 3-D printing technology, another strength is that it will be available for a much cheaper price than existing prosthetic hands, which can cost more than ¥1 million.

To make the first finished product, Handiii is currently running a campaign until Jan. 19 on the Japanese crowd-funding platform Kibidango.


Gift shopping made easy

Often, the hardest part of giving gifts is finding the perfect and appropriate thing to give. Mittu is designed to solve that problem — whether you’re looking for something to celebrate a wedding, welcome a newborn or simply send birthday wishes.

This online original gift-card platform allows you to decide how much you’d like spend — from as low as ¥3,500 up to ¥50,500 — and then shows you various hand-picked selections from thousands of items on the Cocomo lifestyle store. Once you find a selection of three gifts you think your receiver would like, you pick a card design from 20 options, which can be customized with your own photo and a message.

Your gift card is sent out within three business days and the receiver can redeem it for one of the three gifts you chose.

Mittu is currently a mobile website, but there are plans to release an app in the near future.


In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.