Consoles going beyond gaming: The next generation full of possibilities.

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by Squilliam, Dec 5, 2008.

  1. Squilliam

    Squilliam Beyond3d isn't defined yet
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    In the current generation of consoles the boundaries between consoles and computers are shrinking rapidly. Nintendo has brought as a user interface which makes a computer like operation on a console possible and they have expanded the very scope of market to include exercise type games (Wii Fit) and educational type games (Brain training). Microsoft and Sony have taken the media centre approach by placing a lot of emphasis on multimedia functionality with movies and music playing a big role in their unique selling propositions.

    By combining both concepts from Nintendo and Microsoft/Sony and taking them to the next step of evolution, will we see consoles evolve from being merely games machines into a neccessary part of our lives? So instead being defined as a device for playing games, the consoles themselves could possibly challenge the role of the personal computer in the home and perhaps define a new role as the centre of our digital lives.

    Between voice, motion and gesture recognition interfaces which will all probably be considered or discarded for the next generation of consoles the question of interface is likely to be solved. The hardware requirements were never a problematic question and the advent of HD televisions has solved the final problem of displaying text on the screen. All thats left is a final question, how far will the software take us for the next generation?

    The prize which is on offer here may be much larger than simply winning a slice of the gaming pie. There is a really possibility of taking a slice of the large educational software, movie, music, exercise and even general computing markets. Consoles in a way have always acted as a hub of sorts, like an Amplifier acts as a hub for a home entertainment system. With devices becoming increasingly connected, will consoles become the hub which they all connect through? The stakes have never been higher, nor have the possibilities been so open to speculation.
     
  2. Zassk

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    I'll throw out a couple of predictions:

    - a "social gamer" controller that is a merging of the Wiimote and Lips/Singstar microphone is included standard by all 3 consoles (maybe also capable of being a simple media remote). The classic DualShock style gamepad remains for complex games; nobody dares change it.

    - all 3 consoles have optional for-pay premium features of their online service. Various free-with-optional-sub MMO games like Club Penguin make a massive migration to the Wii2. Subscription flash game sites like BigFish align with the different console platforms. Paying subscriptions for 3rd party console services becomes the norm.

    - the Sony and MS consoles look more like a home theater component, and both can do everything Apple TV does on day one (i.e. music store, video store and jukebox).

    - MS's console becomes the standard set-top box for IPTV. A standard HDTV tuner can be added as an accessory, enabling PVR capability.

    - Sony goes aggressive with Linux and offers it on both the PS4 and on their Vaio machines. Customers can buy Linux+wireless KB+mouse for the PS4 for $30.
     
  3. Rangers

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    I really, really, really like my 360 as a media player. Since it got the divx/xvid updates. Mainly because I despise watching movies at my PC. So it's much preferable to me to watch them on my TV. And now 360 since the update allows this.

    Best way to do it is put movies on a USB key, then put it in your Xbox. Avoid troublesome streaming altogether imo.

    This still seems like not very supported. For example to do HD movies I would have to us HFS+ formatting, because of FAT32 4GB cap, and 360 doesnt support NTFS. Thats a small sign how they arent really supporting the media capabilities of the box imo.
     
  4. Gubbi

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    There is no inherent limit in FAT32 that limits partitions/drives to 4GB. Get the FAT32 formatter here to format your USB Flash or HDDs of any size (well, up to 2TB)

    Cheers
     
  5. AntShaw

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    Wait, so I can have a external 500gb drive formatted in HFS+ that stores some media connected and use it as expected?
     
  6. Zaphod

    Zaphod Remember
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    File size, not partition size. The file size limit under FAT32 is (2^32)-1 bytes.
     
  7. Danalys

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    In some ways the features of cell phones have shown what most people want. That stuff is pretty much covered already. You could add a calculator and calender to the consoles I guess. I don't see word processing, spreadsheets or desktop publishing coming to consoles other than with a linux install. The implementation of that can obviously be improved upon.
     
  8. liolio

    liolio Aquoiboniste
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    MS at least will somewhat hold back on making their nextbox "THE" new PC, they have a pc/windows business to run and I think that they would dare to make quiet some hardware vendors angry.

    The next xbox is likely to benefit from mutlimedia capabilities but not that much.
    I think they shoud stick with something as "closed" and secured as the live as it is.
    that have some advantage, any PC like capabilities should be provide by letting you open a distant cession on the family computer for example.
     
  9. Zassk

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    That's why I predict that the nextbox and nextPS will target the home theater. They'll try to convince the public that every home theater should include one of these (and not an AppleTV). They'll style the consoles to look more like home theater equipment. The languishing concept of a HTPC will be realized with these consoles. And they'll definitely (finally) include a music store.
     
  10. midorigreenwood

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    IMO, the next big thing in the educational/non-gaming sector will be....

    National Geographic

    Families absolutely love nature documentaries...... it is educational and they can enjoy it together as a shared endeavor. Look at how popular Steve Irwin was in America.

    There are already a few games that try to give these types of experiences including Endless Ocean (Wii), Aquanaut's Holiday (PS3) and Afrika (PS3)......however the market is small atm and largely untapped.

    Nintendo will need some sort of software hook to convince Wii owners to upgrade to the WiiHD when its released in a few years so they could remarket their new upgraded HD device as the console for the nature and wildlife experience.

    The world is getting ravaged by climate change and it is likely that many animals and environmental wonders like the Great Barrier Reef will disappear in the coming decades.

    Therefore Nintendo could align their console as a cheap and affordable way to enjoy these endangered treasures by developing a series of nature and wildlife simulations. eg: a modern take on Pokemon Snap and launch them in 2011/2012 when the Wii is likely to have reached saturation point

    Perhaps even start an environmental fund where a portion of each game sold goes to save a minke whale....uhm maybe a bad example >,>

    Afrika was a flop in Japan due to the PS3's expensive price, however I believe there is an untapped market for these types of games at the right price.
     
  11. Danalys

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    That's pretty much the natural extention of the current system. Sony are going to be offering a music video download service soon for example. So between Xbox and Playstation we'll have DL games, films and music, aswell as surporting the higher quality disc versions that's everything covered. They could add books and comics i guess, add in DAB for radio much like Play TV adds free over air digital TV.

    You know that of the pieces of the puzzle that either Sony or Microsoft haven't implemented yet, they probably will in the next gen just for bullet point parity.


    I was thinking they could add interactivity with cell phones. Stream video and music to them. Use the mic and camera for internet telephony. Use remote control functions.
     
    #11 Danalys, Dec 11, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 11, 2008
  12. eastmen

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    MS is def going to push their in game advertising for free online gaming. Most likely inbtween rounds we will see adds . They will still have live gold that will most likely give acess to online gaming wih other than peer- peer hosting. They will also most likely limit the room sizes and also chat sizes for non paying online gamers.

    I'd personaly love to see ms add a function to zune where you can converse with your friends on live and for sony and nintendo to do the smae with their hand helds.
     
  13. wco81

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    Gesture recognition without the stupid wand.

    If a cam can detect not just your arm movements but all the way down to the fingers and register them as input, then it would be truly revolutionary.

    Can such tech be made at a mass market price?
     
  14. V3

    V3
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    Don't that Wiimote hacked by Johnny did Minority Report style control, is that what you mean ?
     
  15. midorigreenwood

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    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122930373918205685.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    omfg.... Wii Swim with swimming pool attachment confirmed? :O

    its interesting how many game/non-games ideas Miyamoto gets from his own boring life. eg: Pikmin from love of gardening. He tries to see things from the point of view of the average joe.

    Such a disconnect compared to the majority of game designers out there.
     
    #15 midorigreenwood, Dec 16, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2008
  16. eastmen

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    its a shame that so few of his games are actually fun though. Pikiman was great but wii fit was pretty boring and wii music is just dull and uninspired compared to what others are making
     
  17. midorigreenwood

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    like I said in the "how can nintendo coax 3rd party developer"'s thread.

    software like Wiifit are likely many people's first foray into the joy of videogaming. Its their Game and Watch or Commander Keen or even their Doom.

    It doesn't make them any less of a target market to be looked down at.

    I haven't played Wiifit yet.....but Wii music is surprisingly charming imo.
     
  18. tongue_of_colicab

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    I still think the x360 sucks as a media player. My brother bought one and I checked out the media stuff for him (all the latest updates) but for example his DBZ rips didnt work properly because the build in player couldnt load the baked subs. Also you couldnt select a audiochannel. Actually, it seems they just copied the XP media center player because that has the same problem of not playing everything. And than im not even talking about the retarded way of having to share your media. Mediaplayer sync screws everything. Seriously, I had it scan the pc for music and it came up with tons of artists he doesnt even has music from.

    No, please dont bother me with that. Give me media portal on the pc instead, using it with the windows remote, works perfect. Plays everything, not bullshit with syncing, just point to folders etc. Unless MS or Sony builds it so that I can play everything and can just point to folders instead of broken syncing the xbox or ps will never ever even be close to what a low range pc modified for htpc use can do.
     
  19. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    You can browse folders of your PC from the Xbox. I've been doing it since day one. Yes, you have to have Windows Media Player or the Zune Player installed with Windows Media Connect installed, but it does work just fine thank you.

    Tommy McClain
     
  20. Dregun

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    I'll throw some crazy out!

    I think MS's biggest advantage is that they own the PC market, so why not introduce a product that functions as a PC?

    With all the new technologies available why couldn't they just re-invent an old one? If anyone has ever used a client pc or the like you know that its basically a box that plugs into your network and uses the server to provide all the information to you (client only uses server resources).

    Microsoft Home
    Xbox* hooked up to your TV at home
    Xbox* Hooked up to a router (wireless or not).
    XboxPC (seperate and the size of a external hard drive) has 3 USB ports and 1 DVI. As well as 2gb of internal flash available.

    You plug a mouse, keyboard and monitor into the box and turn it on, suddenly your on a computer that looks an awful lot like Vista. You can go online, watch movies, listen to music and hey your doing all of this while your brother is playing Halo5 and your not using a computer to do it, its all coming from the Xbox*.

    MS could finally cut out the middle man and replace all of those Dells with just a small box you pay a measly $100 for if you already have an Xbox*

    You play games on the Xbox* hooked up to your TV and you do other computer related stuff with your networked client computer. It might not be great for the hard core PC users but how many mom and pops would love to get rid of the tower and need for a large computer desk?

    Lets face it, gaming is still the biggest reason why people want stronger computers. You can listen to music, go on the internet and watch movies with a pentium II without much trouble. It wouldnt' take much power for the next Xbox to provide those functions. It can have a pool of 512mb of basic ram used just for server functions and a small processor set aside to crunch the data needed for the client computer.

    It's the reason MS got into the console market to begin with, they were afraid Sony was going to end up taking away the need for desktop computers and hence MS.
     
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