Video game retailer GameStop expects its sales of digital games to skyrocket, according to Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter.
Citing information he gathered from GameStop's Investor Day on Friday, the analyst said the company expects to "grow its [digital] sales at a 50 percent compound annual growth rate" over the next several years. During the fiscal year ended January 31, GameStop generated $300 million in digital games revenue. The company expects that figure to grow to $1.5 billion in just four years, Pachter said today in a note to investors. GameStop expects the majority of its digital … Read more
Anonymous is now dedicating itself to Sony, according to an open letter allegedly from the infamous hacking group known for its WikiLeaks-related attacks last year.
"You have now received the undivided attention of Anonymous," the open letter to Sony reads. "Your recent legal action against our fellow hackers, Geohot and Graf_Chokolo has not only alarmed us, it has been deemed wholly unforgivable."
Earlier this year, Sony filed for a restraining order against a group of PlayStation 3 hackers, most notably George Hotz (known as Geohot in hacking circles) for jailbreaking the console and allowing people to run custom packages on the device. At the time, Sony said that Geohot's alleged actions violated the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the Computer Fraud Abuse Act. Graf_Chokolo is another person being sued by Sony for alleged hacking.
Although Hotz denies that his activity in jailbreaking PlayStation 3 firmware violates the DMCA, Sony was awarded a temporary restraining order. Since then, Hotz and Sony have been battling it out in court to determine if the U.S. District Court of Northern California, where Sony wants to try the case, has jurisdiction over Hotz, who resides in New Jersey.… Read more
Twentieth Century Fox and Netflix have expanded their digital distribution deal, the companies said today.
Under the new agreement, Netflix can now stream two of Fox's top television shows--"Glee" and "Sons of Anarchy." The first season of "Glee" and the first two seasons of "Sons of Anarchy" were made available on Netflix's streaming service today. Going forward, subsequent seasons will be "added annually," the companies said.
The companies also plan to bring several more series in the Fox library to Netflix, including "Ally McBeal" and &… Read more
Sony plans to expand its Music Unlimited streaming service to more of its gaming hardware, the company reportedly told Eurogamer in an interview published yesterday.
Speaking to the gaming publication, Shawn Layden, executive vice president and CEO of Sony Network Entertainment, said that Music Unlimited would be made available on the PlayStation Portable "in a matter of weeks." He then turned his attention to Sony's upcoming gaming device, codenamed the Next Generation Portable (NGP), which the company plans to release at the end of 2011.
"We will make it happen," Layden said to Eurogamer in … Read more
Digital comics have been around for longer than the iPad, but they were previously confined to either the computer or a tiny smartphone screen. The iPad breathed life into this burgeoning field by providing a larger, colorful display that was still portable.
How the eye follows the page In fact, one of the very first apps to debut on day one of the iPad's release in 2010 was Comixology, an app that allows you to purchase, store, and read comics right on the iPad.
Comixology's iPhone app debuted in late 2009, but it wasn't until the iPad version that the digital comic potential was realized. Comixology boasted a reading experience that's almost cinematic, supposedly mimicking how the eye follows the printed page with a mode called "guided view." In guided view, you read panel by panel, instead of page by page. David Steinberger, Comixology's CEO, claims that around 50 percent of its users use guided view instead of full-page mode.
Content deals soon followed, as Comixology started offering titles by Marvel and DC, the two biggest names in comics. Indeed, Comixology helped the two publishers come up with their own dedicated apps in the iTunes App Store. It has also created title-specific apps like the Scott Pilgrim app that only carries Scott Pilgrim books.
The reason is simple: Specific apps get higher level searchability in the iTunes App Store. This proved especially useful when the movie of the same name debuted and people wanted to read the books that inspired the film.
Audience diversity and growth One of the more interesting results of digital comics on tablets and smartphones is that they typically draw in more casual consumers who are newer to comics. Steinberger said, for example, that the digital audience tends to favor pop culture hits more than traditional comic book fare. When the zombie-centric "Walking Dead" series debuted on AMC, digital sales of the comics on Comixology went up dramatically. This might be because casual consumers either don't know about their local comic book store or just don't want to go there.
"The [traditional] distribution of comics is lame," Steinberger said. "They're not on newsstands anymore, they're not in the corner stores. They're only available to direct-market retailers and there's less distribution than it used to be. There's great opportunity here to gain a larger market [of comic readers]."
He pointed out that the app actually includes a retailer finder. While it might seem odd that Comixology is promoting its brick-and-mortar rivals, Steinberger sees them more as allies.
"Everyone expects us to be a disrupter to steal market share," he said. "We feel that the way the market is shaped in the first place, there's an incredible chance here to enlarge the market. We feel that getting more people to discover comics at all is great for everyone."… Read more
I am a diehard baseball fan. Wait, let me clarify: I am a diehard Oakland Athletics fan. And now's a good time to throw in a full disclosure: I also work for the team on game days as their in-stadium host. I know--it's the greatest job ever for a baseball fan! When I saw that my CNET colleague Erica Ogg was writing a piece about mobile apps for baseball, I thought it would be a perfect way to combine my passions--baseball and tech--into one cool and useful story for our CBS audience.
Loosen up your arm and take to your Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3--there's $1 million on the line.
Starting tomorrow, Take-Two Interactive and Major League Baseball Properties are kicking off the Major League Baseball 2K11 Perfect Game Challenge, which will award $1 million to the first gamer to throw a perfect game in the recently released MLB 2K11.
A perfect game is one of the most impressive feats in baseball. A single pitcher takes the mound and retires all 27 batters without a single opposing player reaching base. Just 18 pitchers in the modern era have thrown a perfect … Read more
A trio of gaming sites has been caught getting users to vote stories into popularity on social-news site Reddit.
The effort, which had been run by a Reddit user called "MasterOfHyrule," made use of multiple accounts to submit, vote, and comment on stories from gaming sites GamePro, G4TV, and GamrFeed. Those stories would then have a greater chance at making it to the front page of the site's gaming subcategory and possibly onto the front page of the site where even more traffic could be had.
There were 2,600 participants, five Angry Birds, and, in the end, one steady-handed 19-year-old champion of them all.
Nokia recently held an Angry Birds championship in downtown Helsinki to determine who was the best finch flinger in all of Finland. The competition was tough, and only the top 32 players were present after regional tournaments singled out the best of the best. After all, 2,600 people from across the Nordic country had tried out--like a geeky version of "American Idol"--to see if they had what it takes to be crowned the champion of the game.
One finalist was only 6 years old, and relied on his father's smartphone to keep his skills fresh.
The stakes were high, and gamers were naturally allured by the entitlement of being the best player of a game that has sold millions of copies across various platforms around the world.… Read more
Attention all GarageBand fans. We need your help creating what we think may be the world's first crowdsourced, fully multitouch-generated album. That's why we're putting out this call for submissions. Please send us your best original musical compositions, so long as they were created wholly using multitouch-based applications like GarageBand (it's OK to add your own vocals, if you dare).
We'll pick the best 10 compositions and songs for inclusion in our digital compilation, which we'll promote around our cubicles, and perhaps even on some sort of globally interconnected network of informational portals, or "sites." All musical genres are welcome.
Here's how to enter:
1. Get creative with GarageBand (or another multitouch music app). 2. Document the process of creating your composition in a video (so we can make sure you only used multitouch apps and didn't bring in a big band), and then let your musical work play in full at the end of the video. Videos should be no longer than roughly seven minutes in total. 3. Upload the video file to MediaFire for free and send the link to emackCNET@gmail.com. Be sure to include your name, location (city and state), and e-mail address. 4. Get them all in by April 30, 2011. Multiple entries are just fine.
We look forward to hearing your creations. Get tapping! And no "Stairway to Heaven" remixes please. We don't want any copyright lawyers after us. … Read more