The NBA has announced a non-exclusive agreement with EA, Take-Two, Sony Computer Entertainment America, Midway and Atari. What this means is more video game choices for sports games fanatics and more competition. This comes as great news since EA has been snatching up exclusive deals with the NFL and the AFL. There is no doubt that NBA video games will be bigger and better thanks to this deal. One thing that sticks out to me, though, is that Sony is the only first party developer to get in on this. Full press release after the jump.
Flickr, the massively popular online photo sharing community, was acquired by Yahoo! on March 20th. Expect to see a vast addition of features starting with an increase storage space, and the ability to log into the site using a Yahoo! ID. According to the flickr blog, pro account owners will get a special treat as a thank you for paying for the service. Prices are also expected to drop in the months to come. We look forward to seeing what Yahoo! can do with this popular community we all have grown to love.
Read More | Flickr Blog
In another wonderful turn of events, it appears that Apple wanted to charge companies who want to use the Made for iPod seal on their products 10% of the retail price on each item sold. After someone realized that this idea probably wouldn’t fly, Apple changed its stance - now they only want 10% of the wholesale price. This is all probably because the iPod has been such a failure, and Apple has made barely anything on the rogue device. Charging a whopping 10% of the wholesale price just might help move the iPod into the mainstream market, while helping to get its name out there. Right.
Read More | Cnet
At the Strategic Account Summit, Microsoft’s answer to Google AdWords was introduced – MSN adCenter. This prototype is designed to help advertisers generate more revenue with the ability to connect to the desired audience throughout the MSN network. The new technology will provide advertisers in depth audience details such as geographic location, gender, age group, lifestyle segment and time of day – thus being able to generate more clicks. Microsoft did not provide many details on how the technology is able to obtain such statistics. Seems that as advertising technology is improved, our privacy seems to diminish as well.
Read More | Microsoft
According to a press release on AMD’s website (www.amd.com), Thomas McCoy, Executive VP of AMD’s Legal Affairs, has bluntly stated that “Intel illegally manipulated the market to exclude competition, hurting PC users around the world,” not limiting his attacks on the CPU giant. He continued to state that Intel was being unfair to the to CPU user’s worldwide by not giving users the freedom of choice. He mentioned that users have specific needs that need to be met. No doubt he was trying to plug the dramatic difference in price between the two brands.
All of these comments come via Japan’s new motions in the market. The country’s Fair Trade Commission has started a campaign to stop Intel’s monopoly of the CPU market. They are the first to do so thus far and are hoping that other technology leading countries follow suit. Japanese Fair Trade Commission has made some interesting discoveries during an 11 month investigation on Intel, one being that Intel is forcing manufactures to buy 100% Intel based PC’s.
Read More | AMD Corporate
Call it a partnership, call it smart, or call it what you will. If you are TiVo, you are calling this a miracle. After getting dumped by DirecTV, TiVo has finally found another outlet it can use to make its way into the homes of millions of Americans - and this is a biggie. TiVo and Comcast have come to an agreement that will see TiVo hardware made available to the majority of Comcast service areas, including jointly developed TiVo solutions (HD TiVo for cable, I guarantee it). The companies expect to start rolling all this out in mid-to-late 2006. You just know that everyone over at TiVo are breathing many signs of relief.
Read More | MarketWatch
In news that makes me smile with glee, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata announced that the companies next-generation console - codenamed “Revolution” - will be backwards compatible with Nintendo Gamecube games. This move adds a lot of power to Nintendo as the next generation race begins to heat up. Microsoft has been trying to tie this feature into the Xbox 2/360 feature set, and has been having difficulty doing so. Having a system be backwards compatible immediately makes it more appealing, as it has hundreds of titles available to play right out of the gate. Iwata also confirmed that the Revolution will come with integrated WiFi capabilities. From the way he was talking at the Game Developers Conference, it seems that Nintendo is finally going to get on board with the online gaming world.
Read More | 1Up
Microsoft has release XNA Studio for video game developers on Monday to ease in the creation of video games for its current console as well as for its next console. The product is meant to help developers exchange code amongst teams in order to speed up development and standardize systems for porting video games from PC to Xbox (2) and vice versa. This means that the tools will be able to assist developers to keep their budget and keep video games from being ridiculously overpriced. According to Microsoft executives, XNA will be help developers keep next generation video games on the same level as the current Xbox video games. We’ll just have to keep our eyes wide open during the months to come and see if these promises are fulfilled.
Read More | CNet
The much anticipated PSP GTA title has been delayed until third quarter 2005. According to their fiscal reports, the title will be set in Liberty City. Whenever they do decide to launch the title, it will sure to be a top seller just as the other GTA titles have been. Also stated in the report is news that the launch of Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition will occur in April for the PS2, Xbox and the PSP. Take-Two interactive promises a great line-up of video games once again this year that are sure to hit the top of the charts.
Read More | Yahoo!
Microsoft has hired Final Fantasy creator, Hironobu Sakaguchi, to produce two exclusive games for its next generation console, Xbox 2/360°. The Final Fantasy series has been highly successful in the Sony Playstation world, and an Xbox exclusive might give Microsoft the edge it needs to topple the number one company in gaming. It is also no secret that Microsoft has had a tough time penetrating the Japanese video game market. Having Sakaguchi on board can definitely help in that respect. The two games are said to be released shortly after the launch of the console on a worldwide basis. We eagerly anticipate what creations Sakaguchi will have in store for us.
Read More | The Inquirer