By now, most of us are used to surcharges that are often justified to
“make up for extra cost” caused by external factors. Netflix has been
talking about potential price increases for Blu-ray rentals for some
time and revealed today that it will be charging customers who want
access to Blu-ray movies an extra $1 per month – which translates into
an increase of at least 6% for subscribers who choose this option.
EA/Mythic’s General Manager Mark Jacobs says gold
farmers aren’t welcome in Warhammer Online and adds quite forcefully
that they can, “go to hell”. Jacobs recently posted in a blog that
he’s instructed his staff to immediately and publically ban all gold
farmers. To add insult to injury, he says Warhammer Online has a
strike team devoted to exterminating gold farmers from the game.
a developer of wearable bio-sensors, is showing off a
brainwave-controlled video game as a concept being jointly developed
with Square Enix. It is being displayed at the Tokyo Game Show 2008 in
Makuhari, Japan, on October 9 and 10.
With the new National Basketball Association (NBA) upon us it also
means it is time for another round of NBA basketball games to light up
our video game consoles.
Video game accessories manufacturer dreamGear has unveiled a new
lightsaber accessory for Star Wars fans who own a Nintendo Wii. It is
called Dual Glow Sabers and you'll find it pricing around around $25 for a pair.
Music industry giants show more and more effort in supporting digital
music download services that compete with Apple’s iTunes. Universal
Music Group this morning announced that it will be supplying its music
catalog to Dada.net, which plans to be offering over-the-air DRM-free
MP3 tracks. The cost per song is well below iTunes pricing: A 15 song
package is sold for $10.
1080p is yesterday: Sony gets more aggressive in promoting
next-generation movie theater technologies, including 4K resolution
movies as well as a new 3D adaptor for its high-end 4K projectors,
which should provide crystal clear 3D movie experiences.
There has been lots of activity in the ebook reader segment lately.
Following Amazon’s Kindle, we recently saw the Plastic Logic’s stunning
device and it appears that Sony will also try to take another shot at
this market. The company will soon be selling an updated version of its
Reader Digital Book, which now includes a touchscreen.
Apple today updated MobileMe, the iTunes jukebox software and the Apple
TV firmware. The updates fix several annoying bugs and bring new
features like Genius and On-The-Go playlists for Apple TV, in addition
to a new standby mode, performance and reliability improvements in
iTunes 8 and support for syncing more than 2000 contacts in MobileMe.
Opinion - On Wednesday, Slide, the Widget start-up primarily
responsible for delivering individuals photo slideshows and videos
announced that it would be hosting video from CBS, Warner Brothers, and
Hulu on Facebook. This is the beginning of a new Facebook application
that is being worked on in partnership with FunSpace Channels that will
open today. Facebook and TV? Does that go together?
Game consoles are not just for gaming anymore. If we look at devices
such as the iPhone, which also wants a share of the gigantic mobile
gaming market, it is clear that mobile devices will have to become
universal entertainment devices with much more functionality of current
devices: Nintendo made a huge step into that direction with the
unveiling of the new DSi today. The new console merges gaming with some
practical applications (web browsing, shopping) and entertainment
(camera and image editing). Extra: SLIDESHOW
Following on the heels of Sony’s recently announced update for the
Playstation Portable, Nintendo said it will be refreshing its DS mobile
gaming console. The pimped DS is scheduled to be introduced this
Thursday in Japan and wills port a camera, a music player capabilities
and enhanced wireless connectivity.
Wal-Mart informed its customers that it will be shutting down its DRM
servers on October, which should be perceived as good news by
customers. But some users may be left with somewhat useless music files
that were purchased before February of this year: DRM-packed songs that
will not be backed up until October 9 cannot be transferred to another
PC thereafter and cannot be recovered in the case of a system crash of
a new installation of the PC.
SonyEricsson is getting into the unlimited music downloads arena with
the pending launch of its new PlayNow plus service. You'll have to wait
for it though in most markets, as it will initially be kicking off only
in Sweden with mobile operator Telenor by the end of the year.
There is little doubt that music downloads will take over most of the
audio CD sales volume sooner or later. The music industry seems to have
accepted that trend and while it may give up on the audio CD, it isn’t
ready to give up on physical media sales yet. Four major publishers
announced a new media format that will be compatible with PCs,
cellphones and other portable devices: Flash memory cards will soon be
sold with preloaded, DRM free music.
Electronic Arts and Crytek are set to deliver the next Crysis game to PC owners September 18. The new title is Crysis Warhead and will be available for around $30 in North America and Europe.
Crysis Warhead, according to EA, occurs alongside the events of last year's franchise title.
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King
is a highly anticipated expansion pack for the most popular MMORPG of
all time. The big question on gamers' minds has been: when will it come
out? Blizzard Entertainment finally answered that question, saying
today the pack will be available November 13 in North America and other
global markets, followed by more world releases in the days immediately
Mythic Entertainment, a division of Electronics Arts acquired back in 2006, continued to say today all is set to roll with the upcoming MMORPG Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning. This title is now shipping to retail and will see a September 18 kickoff.
Rising energy and food prices may finally show their ugly face in the
retail space, as consumers are adjusting their spending, ChangeWave
suggests. It’s once again the time for discount retailers, which will
grab market share from established chains, the market research firm
said. Consumer electronics spending will be weak over the next 90 days,
according to the forecast, but it seems that Apple might see little
impact – and some of its products may actually see record sales.
Electronic Arts has dropped its hostile takeover
bid of Take-Two Interactive. The two companies have been going back
and forth on bids for nearly seven months with Take-Two saying that it
was being undervalued by EA. As you can expect, Take-Two’s stock price
has dropped nearly five dollars and is currently trading at just under
$17 a share.