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'Wonderbook' brings augmented reality to PlayStation

updated 02:27 am EDT, Tue June 5, 2012

Sony's E3 introduction geared for education

Among several expected announcements at Sony's E3 keynote, the company also introduced a surprise, the Wonderbook, which serves as a complement to the PlayStation Move system. The device, designed in conjunction with Harry Potter author JK Rowling, serves as an input device for interactive augmented-reality features in virtual books and other educational content.

Although most of Sony's promotional videos showed characters popping out of the Wonderbook hardware when held in a user's hands, implying at the very least that there might be a display on the device, all of the virtual representations appear on the television. Users can watch themselves interacting with the book, which illuminates with all of the interactive features when viewed on the screen.

Owing to the collaboration with JK Rowling, one of the first titles to be available for the Wonderbook will be Book of Spells. Previews suggest the book is set in a fantasy world similar to that of the Harry Potter series, however it is unclear if Rowling's iconic character makes an appearance in the PlayStation title. The Move wand also serves as a supplementary input device, working as a wand in the case of Book of Spells.

Sony has yet to announce a release date or pricing details for the Wonderbook. Although the PS3 is competitive against the Wii and the Xbox, Sony's Move technology has struggled to gain the same level of popularity that has been achieved by Nintendo's Wii controllers and Microsoft's Kinect system.

by MacNN Staff



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