Blurry video reveals black base color, prominent edges in design
Sony has teased its upcoming game console, via a video uploaded to YouTube. The clip, which alternates between close-up shots and one zooming into what could be presumed to be the impending PlayStation 4, is released the day before Microsoft is due to reveal its future plans for its own replacement for the Xbox 360.
Electronic Arts to discontinue Online Pass policy for new titles
If a report at VentureBeat is accurate, Electronic Arts has decided to rid itself of the reviled online pass. According to the report, the EA senior director of corporate communications John Reseburg confirmed the cancellation of the program, saying “Yes, we’re discontinuing Online Pass, none of our new EA titles will include that feature." Viewed as a countermeasure to used game sales, the pass included in the purchase of new games allowed game play on the company's servers across Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network. Used purchasers, or customers borrowing a game, must purchase a pass if they wish to play online, with access costing approximately $10.
Sales of PS2 gear to continue for 'several months'
Years after it discontinued sales of similarly-aged Nintendo Gamecube and original Microsoft Xbox hardware and games, retailer Gamestop has announced that June 1 marks the end of trade-ins of PlayStation 2 games, accessories, and the console itself. Used and new game sales will continue in all locations, inventory depending, with existing stock expected to last for "several months" after the June 1 cutoff.
Sony PS Vita 3G looks set to be axed, $100 price cuts on offer
Sony’s PlayStation Vita 3G model is seeing price cuts of $100 across the US, reports Joystiq. Normally retailing for $299, the device is can be picked up for as little as $199 at a number of Sony stores. The price includes an 8GB memory card, and a free game if upon signing up to a data plan, although the deal is not currently available online.
Brief interview addressed price, form factor, future of new console
After a Sony press event yesterday leaving more questions than answers about the Playstation 4, Sony Computer Entertainment of America Chief Executive Officer Jack Tretton fielded some questions from AllThingsD following the event. Topics covered -- and mostly avoided -- included the pricing of the console, Sony's "living room and beyond" strategy, and the lack of a physical console shown at the presser.
Interactions limited versus PlayStation Vita
Official PlayStation apps for iOS and Android will allow some limited "second screen" functions with the PlayStation 4, Sony has announced. Users will be able to handle tasks like buying PS4 games, which will then download to the console, or remotely watching other gamers playing. Actual gameplay enhancements will be simpler, such as displaying maps while playing an RPG.
Eight core AMD x86 processor with Radeon graphics drive the console
Updated with statement on used game support Despite little mention of solid tech specs at the reveal, Sony has released a list of technical specifications for the upcoming console. Confirming earlier rumors, the PlayStation 4 runs AMD multi-core silicon, with a "next generation" Radeon graphics processor rated at 1.84 teraflops in the die of the CPU.
Console based on x86 architecture
As expected, Sony's has announced official details surrounding its PlayStation 4 game console today at a special event in New York. The company has focused heavily on social features and streaming gaming, taking advantage of technology refined by acquired company Gaikai, highlighting the ability to run demos instantly and start games while the rest of the data continues to download in the background.
Existing Sony, Microsoft consoles over six years old
Sony is inviting journalists and investors to an event on February 20, with a teaser video implying that attendees will "see the future." The event is called the "Playstation Meeting 2013," predating Sony's Destination PlayStation event that begins on February 25. The video clearly shows the circle, square, triangle, and X found on the PlayStation controller, and has a backdrop of the same blue often found on PlayStation packaging. The website associated with the video lists the time of the reveal at 6PM ET.
Gaming network intrusion 'could have been prevented'
Sony has been fined £250,000 ($395,000) by the Information Commissioner's Office of the United Kingdom over the April 2011 hack of the PlayStation Network. The UK authority criticized Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, claiming the online gaming system's infiltration "could have been prevented" if security software used by SCEE had been kept up-to-date, with increased security on user passwords.
New white bundle includes 18-title instant game collection
Sony has launched a new version of the PlayStation 3 in North America, this time in "Classic White." The new console bundle will also have a matching white controller, a 500GB hard drive, the console's largest ever; and a year-long membership to PlayStation Plus, including access to a downloadable collection of PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita games.
Withdraws PS2 from Japan, unknown for other regions
Sony is putting a stop to sales of the long-standing and popular PlayStation 2 game console in Japan. The electronics giant made an announcement earlier today that there will be no more shipments to Japanese retailers, in the future, and that the only remaining stock on the market are consoles held on store shelves or warehouses.
$300 PS Vita includes Unit 13, one-year PS Plus membership
Sony this week announced plans to celebrate bringing the PlayStation Plus subscription service to the PS Vita earlier this month by launching a new bundle. Called the PS Plus Instant Game Collection PS Vita Bundle, it includes a PS Vita 3G Wi-Fi system, a 4GB memory card, a game voucher for Unit 13, and a one-year membership to PS Plus. The bundle represents a savings of more than $99, Sony claims.
Move controllers surpass 15M sales
Sony has announced that its PlayStation 3 has surpassed 70 million units in global sales, just one week shy of its sixth year on the market. The company also noted that sales of the optional Move controller, which has been on the market for two years, have already surpassed 15 million units.
Vita 2.0 software update arrives on November 19th in the US
Sony on Tuesday revealed that when the PS Vita gets a software update to version 2.0, it will bring with it access to Sony's PlayStation Plus service for the first. Those who are subscribers on the PS3 will be able to access their accounts from the Vita without an extra subscription fee. The service will allow subscribers to purchase discounted games, get exclusive free demos and trials, and get other content.
Orbis system based on AMD A10 APU
Game developers have started to receive development kits for the Playstation 4, according to reports. The systems, to be used by programming teams and game publishers while making next-gen titles, arrive just three months before another Playstation 4 development kit is set to be issued. As they are effectively a "modified PC", they offer no real clues to the system's external design, though some internal details have emerged.
Plaintiffs have until November 9 to refile with amendments
District Judge Anthony J. Battaglia has dismissed most of a class-action lawsuit filed by users of Sony's PlayStation Network data breach from 2011. The suit filed last June accuses Sony of inadequate user information protection, failure to abide by industry standard practices, and exposure of users to risk of identity theft. Compensation for paid services not accessible during the shutdown, such as MLB.tv, NHL Gamecenter, and Netflix is sought by the plaintiffs as well.
Sony PlayStation Store to get largest redesign to date in October
Sony showed off images of what a newly redesigned PlayStation store will look like at a London press event on Thursday. The details were shared by VG 24/7 and include new features as well as an all-new look for the digital storefront that's a showcase for the latest content for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, and PSP. Europe will get the update first, on October 17, while North American users will get to experience it on October 23.
Unit smaller, lighter than previous models
Sony has taken the wraps off of its newest model of the Playstation 3 at the pre-Tokyo Game Show press conference. The new model is 25 percent smaller and 20 percent lighter than the current PS3, and comes in three hard drive storage capacities -- 250GB and 500GB hard drives, or 12GB flash storage.
Fox' Digital HD movies coming to iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, Xbox Live, more
Google was one of many on Tuesday to reveal that it has signed a new deal with Twentieth Century Fox to bring over 600 titles to Google Play and YouTube. Dubbed Digital HD and available on the premium services, the shows and movies will be available to rent or buy, with many in high-definition. The campaign is highlighted by Fox's Prometheus, which can be purchased on Tuesday in HD for just under $15, a full three weeks before it comes out on Blu-ray, DVD, and video-on-demand services.
YouTube app for PS3 is said to be launching on Tuesday
YouTube has just detailed a new application for Sony's PlayStation 3 gaming console. The app should up the experience of the movie-sharing resource, which was always accessible through Sony's Flash-ready browser. The app will also allow users to use their smartphones to control the playback on the big screen.
Spotted documents make Gamescom reveal a probability
Sony may be coming out with a revised PlayStation 3 that is even smaller than the revised model introduced three years ago. An FCC filing seen by PocketNews shows an unknown PlayStation 3 with the model number CECH-4001X, which Eurogamer suggests is a "Super Slim" version, rumored to be unveilled at Gamescom next month.
Console now said to integrate 3.2GHz processor
Sony made no mention of its next-generation PlayStation console this week at E3, however recent rumors outline a fresh list of hardware specs. Unnamed sources have told Dutch gaming site PSX-Sense the fourth-generation PlayStation, referred to by the code-name "Orbis," will integrate a new quad-core 3.2GHz AMD Fusion APU, which has been referred to by the monicker "Liverpool."
Record videos from Xbox, PS3 feeds
Among the myriad of gaming companies in Los Angeles this week for E3, Elgato may seem a bit out of place. The company last week released its Game Capture HD, however, and we had a chance to check out the new recording device for Xbox, PlayStation or any other game console.
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.
Simultaneous release expected August 21
As promised by Valve in 2011, the follow-up to one of the most popular player-versus-player online games of all time, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is shipping for the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live, and Steam for Windows and OS X on August 21. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is a combined effort from both Valve, and Hidden Path Entertainment. Demos are available for play at this week's Electronics Entertainment Expo.
Company not ready to drop optical media
Sony has reportedly considered diverging from the game industry's reliance on physical media for its next game console. The company is said to have ultimately rejected the idea for its next-generation device, deciding to maintain the same optical-disc format of existing PlayStation consoles, unnamed sources have told The Wall Street Journal (sub. required).
First game available for pre-buy will be Sorcery
Sony has just revealed it will allow PlayStation Network (PSN) users to buy and download games before they're released, but they won't be able to play them until their on-sale date. The move mimics the way Steam distributes its game titles. The option should appeal to hard-core gamers who don't want to wait for the download on the release date.
Sony to stream live E3 webcast, promises future of gameplay at E3
Sony has invited the press to a conference before the E3 gaming show on its dedicated website. At the show, it plans to reveal 20 new game titles and what it calls the "future of gameplay and innovation." Exactly what that involves remains to be seen, but it could have something to do with its next-generation home console, the Orbis. That console will not be unveiled at the show, however, the company said earlier.
PS Vita gets Skype with background support
PlayStation Vita owners got a major feature update Tuesday with the imminent release of Skype for PS Vita. The app lets the Sony console participate in both voice and video calls using either the front or back cameras. The app not only works both on 3G and Wi-Fi but truly runs in the background, making sure that gamers will catch an incoming call.
5GB cloud service due in six countries next week
Sony will bring its PlayMemories Online cloud storage service to PlayStation users next week, the company revealed on Friday. Unveiled at CES, the service will offer 5GB of online storage space to PlayStation Network members in six countries, including the US, Canada, Japan, Germany, France, and the UK. Users will have the ability to upload their photos taken by Sony cameras using PlayMemories Home software for Windows and OS X platforms as well as their smartphones.
PlayStation Suite SDK beta now available
Sony has made good on its promise made last month and launched the PlayStation Suite SDK beta for developers. Any interested party can download the software, letting them create software for all PlayStation-certified hardware. This includes the PS Vita console and the Xperia line of phones and tablets.
PSN down for half a day on Monday
Sony triggered an upset among gamers on Sunday with notice that it would be taking down the PlayStation Network for maintenance during 13 hours on Monday. From 9AM Eastern until 10PM, gamers won't have the option of playing any games online, checking their accounts, or using services like PlayStation Home and the PlayStation Store. Websites that need PSN, even including the official PlayStation blog, would also be switched off.
PS Vita now friendlier to photo uploads
Sony has quietly updated the PlayStation Vita's Facebook app to support photo uploads. At least on Wi-Fi, gamers can now post photos from the console's cameras directly to the news feed or to the Wall. Accordingly, the social app now recognizes photo tags.
PS3 in red carries more storage, gear
Previously limited to Japan, Sony's red PlayStation 3 has made a rare leap to the UK. The Scarlet Red model comes in its namesake deep hue with a DualShock 3 gamepad to match. It sits at the high end of Sony's lineup with not just a 320GB hard drive but a second gamepad to get users started on two-player games.
NPD data shows Xbox 360 out front again
New NPD data published late Thursday gave the Xbox 360 not just a sustained lead in March but a rare milestone in hardware overall. At 371,000 units, Microsoft's console stayed in the lead for overall sales for the 15th consecutive month. The $430 million spent on the hardware and its games, however, was also larger than the combination of money spent supporting the Nintendo Wii and Sony PS3.
GameStop settlement offers customer restitution
GameStop has settled a class-action lawsuit concerning advertised downloadable content not being included in used games being resold. Under the settlement terms, the game retailer must warn potential buyers from California online and in-store that certain content may require an additional purchase.
Sony may slash 6pc of all staff to go profitable
Sony's April 12 strategy meeting might see it make its largest job cut to date. Leaks to the historically accurate Nikkei have had it slashing 10,000 jobs, or about six percent of its worldwide employee base. The Japanese trade paper added that seven executive leaders, including chairman and former CEO Sir Howard Stringer, would likely be asked to forfeit their bonuses.
PS3 Wireless Stereo Headset getting tweaks
Sony on Thursday made owners of its PS3 Wireless Stereo Headset aware that it was planning to fix a problem existing ever since the PS3's 4.10 firmware update. It wanted to improve conflicts between "sidetone," the inclusion of the wearer's own voice to provide feedback, and some games. The addition had produced "unintended" effects, Sony said.
Nintendo 3DS outsells Sony gear for second week
Nintendo's handheld 3DS gaming console has topped the sales charts in Japan for week of March 26 to April 1. While this is the second week its was atop the charts, the week saw nearly a 30 percent boost from that earlier week, now at 121,921 units, according to numbers reported by Media Create (viaAdrianSang). The numbers were large enough that the total of 3DS sales outnumber the combined numbers of all of Sony's consoles, including the PS3, PSP, PS Vita, and PS2.
Hirai to unveil One Sony strategy in next week
Sony in a brief message called for a corporate strategy meeting on April 12 in which it would outline the company's new direction for the media. Details were short, but it would involve just-instated CEO Kaz Hirai. Most expect the discussion to center around Hirai's definition of a "One Sony" strategy meant to eliminate the 'silos' that have kept Sony divisions either isolated or even competing against each other.
PS Orbis may use both dedicated and integrated GPU
Sony's PlayStation Orbis may have had some of its specifications firmed up through an unusually detailed rumor. The next-generation combo is now believed by IGN to be using one of AMD's current higher-end processors, the quad-core 2.9GHz A8-3850, with the as yet unannounced Radeon HD 7670. While the graphics would be considered low-end by modern standards, the A8's integrated Radeon HD 6550D video might be used in an asynchronous pairing to offload some tasks.
Details remain scarce
Sony has released a software update for the PlayStation Vita, while teasing an upcoming video feature for the PlayStation 3. As part of the weekly PlayStation Blogcast, Sony's social media manager, Jeff Rubenstein, noted that the company is working on a "cool new video service" that will be available for PSN users.
Next Xbox may lean on graphics and DRM
A currently uncertain but unusually detailed rumor Monday has Microsoft's next-generation Xbox making aggressive decisions on hardware. Multiple tips to VG24/7 supported AMD's hints of movie-quality 3D graphics with claims there would be two Radeon HD 7000 graphics cores. Rather than simply pair them up to form a single virtual card, as with AMD's usual CrossFire, it would have each core rendering separate objects in the same scene.
PS4/Orbis may get Kinect-like gaming features
The rumored PlayStation Orbis, a codename for the upcoming PlayStation 4, may use a Kinect-like motion sensor to track gamers, according to images posted online at design firm Coque. The illustrations have since been pulled, but have been saved by original rumor source Kotaku and embedded below. The PlayStation Eye, an accessory for the current PS3 console, already has tracking capabilities, though it's not as advanced as the Kinect's sensors.
Sony Xperia Play gets test build of Android update
Sony finished the week by providing an Android 4.0 beta for owners of the Xperia Play. The release requires users unlock the bootloader on their phone, taking the device at least temporarily out of warranty, but will give the interface boosts and support for apps like Chrome for Android. Most of the obstacles are the risks of some games not being fully optimized as well as the absence of officially blessed Google apps, including Face Unlock, Gmail, and Google Maps.
Sony picks media head as CEO
Sony has confirmed rumors from earlier in the month and appointed its Sony Pictures leader Michael Lynton as Sony Corporation of America CEO. While he will continue to lead the movie and TV studio, the company's music division CEO Doug Morris, its PlayStation group SCEA, and its local electronics group.
PlayStation 4 gets possible major new leak
Gradually mounting talk of early PlayStation 4 plans culminated Wednesday with a potentially telling rumor. Believed to be codenamed Orbis or "circle," possibly to make it part of a "circle of life" with the Vita, the system outlined to Kotaku would not just break from using the Cell processor but from the entire Power and NVIDIA graphics combo. Instead, it would reportedly use a 64-bit, x86-based AMD processor as well as graphics based on AMD's Southern Island core, used in the Radeon HD 7700 series and up.
PlayMemories Studio handles photos
Sony's hinted at PS3 photo editing suite has reached North America through PSN. PlayMemories Studio on the PS3 both provides a more efficient, timeline-based way of organizing photos and videos than the stock interface as well as a way to edit them on the game console. Along with art filters, users can lay on captions and scripts as well as introduce slower playback and sound effects on videos.
Sony Xperia S now shipping worldwide
Sony has just revealed that its PlayStation-certified Xperia S smartphone has begin shipping across the world on Wednesday. Local retailers and providers will soon get all the pricing and information for the device, which runs on Android 2.3. An update to Android 4.0 is promised for later this spring.