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Sony: UMD-less PSP Has Always Been the Plan

200°
291w ago - According to Sony's product planning division head Naoya Matsui, "We'd planned to release a PSP model without a UMD drive since the very beginning."

Further elaborating on this statement, "But if we'd simply release the hardware, there wouldn't have been much for everyone to enjoy," he said in an interview with Japanese site GameBusiness (linked above).

To quote: "We needed to prepare the right environment for it first - things like the transferral of content with the PS3 and PSN, and PC software to manage content like music and movies such as Media Go."

Of course, they had to wait first until digital content is at a competitive playing field with physical media, and now the time is right.

The PSP Go will simultaneously launch in the US and Europe on October 1, while Japan will get it a month later.
 

Attention European Readers: EU PlayStation Blog Has Launched!

50°
296w ago - Today Sony's Social Media Manager Jeff Rubenstein has announced that their former ThreeSpeech has now officially launched as the European PlayStation Blog.

To quote: This morning, our friends over at SCEE launched [Register or Login to view links], bringing you pertinent, region-specific news like local PlayStation Store updates, release dates, prices, and more. Also, they have charming accents.

We encourage you to drop in, subscribe to [Register or Login to view links], and drink in the European flavor (flavour?). Paris in springtime is wonderful, no?

We've been more than happy to serve our readers across the pond for the past two years or so (has it really been that long?), and we'll still be here for you in the future, doing what we do. We hope you'll still drop in on us from time to time.

And, when you do, please bring us [Register or Login to view links]. We love them.
 

Has Microsoft's XBox 360 Console Run Out of Technical Steam?

550°
301w ago - Whenever the issue of the Xbox 360 running out of technical steam is risen, you always get the same answer, "there's still more it can do", no offence but this excuse is getting old pretty quickly.

Is there really any thing left in the Xbox 360, hardware wise? I really don't think so.

It's been 3 years and still there are less than a handful of games that have pushed the visual boat that much farther, notably... Gears of War and Gears of War 2, what else has really brought outstanding graphics to the table? Halo 3?

In contrast in just 2 years the PS3 has seen exclusives games that easily destroy what is on the Xbox 360, games like Killzone 2, Uncharted and Metal Gear Solid 4 spring quickly to mind, and these are out of what has been released, looking at what is still ahead, Uncharted 2, God of War 3 and Heavy Rain, the pattern looks set to continue.

So how in 3 years the console has only 1 series producing great graphics, and when one compares the visuals of gears of war 2 to that of the first, the difference isn't much...

My question is 'what really is left in the Xbox 360' technically? I know developers can get more out of the console through art styles and optimisation but it looks to me like the main bulk of tech hardware in the Xbox 360 has been squeezed dry.
 

Has the XBox 360 Console Accepted its Defeat in 2009?

350°
302w ago - Xbox 360 has been more successful than PlayStation 3 in the last 2 years, dominating in both hardware and software sales... but 2009 has been dry for Xbox 360.

According to a series of recent reports by the research group DFC Intelligence, the game industry is poised to see enormous overall growth in 2009.

DFC estimates that the videogame market will swell to $47 billion, a 42 percent increase over the $33 billion generated by the industry in 2006. That forecast includes revenue from videogame hardware and software sales.

PlayStation 3's exclusive line-up this year is great, and is already helping Sony with some decent sales, but Microsoft seems to be doing nothing in order to get their share from that $47 billion as there is no 360 exclusive sure to make a splash this year.

I think Microsoft is already too late, even if they unveil some exclusives or yet another batch of paid-for exclusive DLC's they won't be able to release them this year.

I am sure Microsoft has some aces up their sleeves, but shouldn't they be rolled out by now? Share your thoughts below.
 

Nielsen Report Reveals Nintendo Wii Has Lowest User Activity

50°
303w ago - Nielsen's State of the Video Gamer study, [Register or Login to view links] Tuesday, indicates that Wii owners use their console less than Xbox 360 and PS3 owners.

To quote: The research firm said Wii owners used their consoles 6.8 percent of the total amount of time that they could have used the system during Nielsen's measurement period during December 2008.

This compares to Xbox 360's "Active User Percentage" of 10.2 percent and PS3's 10.6 percent, which both led the way amongst current and last-gen consoles.

In average usage days, Wii trailed all other consoles except for GameCube with five days (GameCube had 4.5 days). PS3 and Xbox 360 were used 6.8 and 7.1 days average, respectively.

Wii also was last in terms of daily average number of sessions with 1.78 sessions, versus 2.42 for PS3 and 2.15 for Xbox 360.

Nielsen noted that Xbox 360 and PS3 have more features (particularly multimedia capabilities) than other consoles measured in the survey, which would lead to more usage.

"Predominant users of the Wii and GameCube are likely to use these consoles at most once a week and for fewer minutes and the fewest number of sessions compared to the other two groups of consoles,"...
 
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