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After HD DVD Drop, Toshiba Spends $835M to Back PS3

50°
342w ago - Sony gives Toshiba something in return for its troubles -- Japanese Cell chip plants for $835M

A new twist has emerged with the death of HD DVD. After Warner, Best Buy, Walmart and Netflix jumped on the Blu bandwagon, the fate of HD DVD was already sealed.

Despite the grim news, the principle HD DVD developer, Toshiba Corporation, refused to initially comment on its plans for its HD DVD. However, as many analysts predicted, Toshiba came out last week and officially surrendered to Blu-ray.

Many saw Toshiba's willingness to give up on HD DVD as a logical business decision and perhaps an admission of Blu-ray's superiority. However, there might be a little more to the story. Reuters reports that on Wednesday Toshiba and Sony Corporation, one of Blu-ray's principle developers, agreed to a major business deal, reached just after Toshiba made its final HD DVD decision.

Sony agreed to sell it microchip processing facilities in western Japan for approximately $835M USD. These facilities currently produce Cell processors and RSX graphic chips. Toshiba will enter the joint venture with Sony on April 1, 2008.

Toshiba, IBM and Sony were the principle developers of the Cell microprocessor, but Toshiba previously showed little interest in using the chip for any of its own...
 

Home is 'best-looking multiplayer world'

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343w ago - The creative director of Sony's Home project has told GamesIndustry.biz in an exclusive interview to be published in full next week that he believes the PlayStation 3 virtual world platform is the "best-looking" and most "user-friendly" multiplayer experience he's seen so far.

Talking on a recent trip to Monaco for the Imagina conference, Ron Festejo explained his feeling that other virtual worlds, such as Second Life, were garish, while other online experiences were simply too hardcore for most people.

"From my point of view, looking at Second Life - because it has been mentioned a lot in the same paragraph as Home, and people make that comparison - I'm amazed at how many people go on there," he said.

He went on to discuss the importance of user-interfaces, detailed the issues he'd had interacting with others in Second Life, and also referenced other online titles that don't make it easy for inexperienced players to get involved with them.

"John [Venables, Home's lead artist] said in a presentation that for a lot of people, their first experience of online play is to 'log on...get shot in the face, log on...get shot in the face' and actually that's true - people tend to not go into that because of those experiences," he explained.

"Personally, looking at other models,...
 

GDC 2008: Sony's head of product development on PSN

50°
343w ago - Sony's head of product development, John Hight, talks about the PlayStation Network.

Video of the Interview below..

Enjoy!




 

Army of Two Opening Cinema trailer out!

50°
343w ago - Check out this video courtesy of GameTrailers of the opening cinema of Army of Two.

This is how it all starts!

Video can be seen below:




 

Digital downloads will be Blu-ray's downfall

250°
343w ago - With the fall of HD DVD, Blu-ray has assumed the throne as the next format of choice, but its reign will be short-lived.

Blu-ray won't enjoy the same decade-long dominance DVD did after it succeeded VHS. But that's not because there will be other challenger physical disc formats. Rather, instead of buying discs from Amazon, Best Buy or Wal-Mart, people will begin getting their entertainment in the form of digital downloads in larger volumes.

The studios backing Blu-ray already know this. At an HDTV confab last fall, Warner Bros.' vice president of high-definition media development likened HD packaged media to a set of training wheels for digital downloads.

"We can use HD discs to train consumers to move into digital, but it's a transition," said Warner Bros.' Dan Silverberg. "Downloaded content will come, but the consumer will get quicker tutorial into video-on-demand, etc., by owning a Blu-ray player or HD DVD."

It'll happen sooner than they think. With a growing number of alternatives to packaged media, combined with the relatively high prices of Blu-ray players and discs vs. inexpensive, so-called upconverting DVD players, Blu-ray will likely be the last major disc format you'll ever buy.

Netflix, a purveyor of rental discs, obviously saw the writing on the...
 
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