The chef's knife was introduced in Japan during the Meiji restoration, and before that there were many iterations from "no red meat" to "no meat at all" in Japanese history, due to natural restrictions (i.e. limited wild livestock) and political restrictions (after the spread of Buddhism, the emperor was not allowed to eat meat). So Japan has thin edges for fish and vegetables, but no kitchen knives for red meat.
However, during the Meiji restoration period, the government began to strongly advocate eating meat. When meat such as beef was put on the table, it naturally needed a proper kitchen knife to cook. However, due to the difference of emphasis, Japanese people improved the Japanese santoku according to the French chef knife, so the beef knife is also known as the santoku chef knife.
The arc of the back of the knife is leveled down slightly, and the chef's knife tip is narrowed up. This is the biggest difference between them.
However, in addition to red meat, there are also vegetables and fish in the kitchen. For convenience, the Japanese improved Japanese santoku knife on the basis of cutting and a thin blade of local vegetables and butchers knife. It absorbs the tip design of the butcher's knife and adjusts the overall blade curvature, making it more convenient to broach and scythe with the blade. So in front of meat, fish, and vegetables, it is very easy for cutting, and the overall design of the Japanese santoku knife body can adapt to a variety of knife methods. If there is only one knife at home, it will be a good choice. Therefore, it is favored by Japanese housewives.