Sony is set to reveal the PlayStation 4 in less than three weeks, on February 20th. According to The Wall Street Journal, not only will we get a look at the PS4 and a rundown of all the new features, which include "more social gaming aspects" and "changes in how users interact with the machine," but gamers can expect to be able to pick up the new PlayStation later this year.
As for the console itself, not much is known--what we do know is that it will likely be powered by an AMD CPU and GPU, which could prove difficult for PS3 backwards compatibility, since the PS3 is powered by Sony's Cell processor. Additionally, although Sony considered shipping the PlayStation 4 without an optical drive, the Blu-ray drive will still be present, because the company believes that games are too big, and broadband not yet fast enough, to rely on hard drive storage and digital downloads.
We'll have all the info for you on the 20th!
Read More | WSJ
Nintendo, ever the master of shooting itself in the foot, has quite possibly found the worst time to unveil some of their future plans for the Wii. Originally, way back in 2005 Nintendo stated that the Wii would have DVD playback, and the fans rejoiced - this was a much-lauded departure from Nintendo’s strategy with the Gamecube of focusing ONLY on gaming. After a long silence, Nintendo confirmed earlier this year that the Wii would NOT in fact have DVD playback. The reason given was that this would help to lower the cost of the console for consumers and ultimately wouldn’t make much of a difference, given that DVD player penetration is already quite high, worldwide.
Now comes the curious news… just today (barely a week before launch) Sonic Solutions announced that they had been tapped by Nintendo to create a DVD-playback solution for the Wii. The announcement stated that the Sonic Solutions will be working on a software-based playback method that will be released with an updated Wii console sometime in 2007. First of all, there’s the question of firmware updating - given that Nintendo has engineered a relatively flexible, updatable OS for the Wii, why hasn’t Nintendo thought about figuring out a way to implement this software on the current Wii console via a software update? Can the current Wii not handle this amount of processing? And second, REALLY REALLY bad timing Nintendo… are you trying to convince anyone that might be wavering on whether or not to pick up a Wii to wait until 2007? The current news really doesn’t make any sense at all - we can only hope that Nintendo will clarify all this and hopefully tell us that our circa 2006 Wiis will eventually be DVD-compatible.
The full announcement can be found after the jump.
Read More | Sonic Solutions Press Center
Microsoft has finally announced their (unsurprising) price for the HD-DVD add-on drive. And it’s…. (drumroll please!) $199.99. So, if you buy a platinum system with the HD-DVD add-on, you’ll be spending a remarkably PS3-looking $599.98. Of course, what with the recent Fry’s deal and other bundles appearing all over the place, that combo might be quite a bit cheaper by the time the PS3 launches (or it at least might come with a few games in addition!).
Both Microsoft and Sony’s strategy are interesting in their own ways. While the Xbox 360 with HD-DVD add on doesn’t really look all that sleek or enticing, it does offer consumers the option of choosing whether or not they want to enter the Hi-Def DVD format war fray. And while Sony’s console looks ridiculously expensive, it does offer pretty much the same features as a 360 + HD-DVD combo, but in a sleeker package. It’s looking more and more like it’s going to be a close race for #1, but that could all change if MS decides to get really competitive with their pricing.
Read More | Xbox.com
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