If the Prince racquet controller is a boost for the Wii, then the "Porsche 911 Turbo S Wheel" and related accessories will put the Playstation 3 into overdrive. As is fitting for a global racing legend, the branded wireless equipment--complete with gear shifters, pedals and logo-bearing USB dongle, as well as the wheel--is all "fully licensed, to-spec reproduction," according to Gizmodo. At $350 it's certainly not the cheapest gaming gear around, but when you consider the full-size alternatives, it's a bargain.
The last few days rumors have been circulating that Sony was preparing to announce a new rumble-equipped controller for the PS3. As you may know, the current PS3 controllers don't shake, which we assume was because Sony got slapped with a lawsuit in 2004 for allegedly stealing Immersion Corporation's rumble technology for its Dual Shock and Dual Shock 2 controllers. But after Sony ponied up $90 million, the two sides had reportedly been mending fences, and that some rumble was on the way. Now IGN's confirmed that indeed something is shaking with the PS3 controller.
IGN's … Read more
One of our original and most persistent gripes about the PS3 has been the lack of any sort of IR support that would allow you to program your universal remote to command the system. As you're probably aware, the PlayStation 3 uses Bluetooth technology for its wireless controllers, as well as an optional Bluetooth remote that's designed for movie watching. While home-theater buffs may love their PS3's AV capabilities, they tend to find the lack of IR really irritating. It means that every time you want to watch a movie (or play a game) on the PS3, you have to switch to a second controller. Not so with the Xbox 360, which has an IR port on its face.
One would think that Sony would put out some sort of IR dongle that would solve the universal-remote compatibility issue (or hopefully integrate IR into the next version of the PS3), but thus far, no such Sony dongle has emerged. However, a handful of other USB dongles are trickling their way onto the market. … Read more
Our friends over at Gamespot posted a blog yesterday discussing the likelihood of a rumored $400 PS3 that would arrive in time for the holidays. The entry links to a story on Ars Technica about how the PlayStation 3's sales are slowing again after a brief burst of momentum following the price drop to $500 on the 60GB version of the console. Analysts are already predicting that Sony will soon drop the price of the 80GB PS3 to $500 and one of Ars Technica's "reliable" moles is saying that Sony will also bring out a $400 … Read more
Sony and a technology site are using a conference to show off a confluence of next-generation, monopoly-bypassing technology: a Sony Playstation 3 videogame console running Linux and Firefox as a foundation for Web-based "Office 2.0" applications.
Sony called the conference a great opportunity to "showcase the PS3 system's computing power and productivity capabilities."
"Installing Linux and Firefox on the PS3 enables … Read more
In a year dominated by game sequels, movie tie-ins and brand extensions, original video game ideas (referred to as original IP, or intellectual property) are hard to come by. Grand Theft Auto IV was on target to be one of 2007's biggest games before its recent delay, but two other franchise entries, Halo 3 and the latest Madden game, will clearly dominate the holiday shopping season. One of the reasons 2K's BioShock, released at the end of August, has generated such positive buzz among gamers is that it represents a rare high-profile stab at an original game.
Fortunately, … Read more
Many home theater geeks love their PlayStation 3s as Blu-ray players, but don't want to pick up a gaming controller to watch a movie. But thanks to the PS3's lack of an infrared port, existing universal remotes can't be used with the console. That's why the niche of PlayStation 3 remotes has popped up, and the newest remote from Messiah is slick-looking. The Messiah Darklite DVD remote strongly resembles LG's Chocolate cell phones, and as you slide down to open the remote you get access to more advanced functions like chapter forward/backward and display. The remote also looks to be fully backlit, which is a big plus if you plan to use it in a darkened home theater. Backlighting uses a lot of battery juice, so it's nice that the Darklite has a built-in rechargeable battery that plugs into the base station. The base station itself connects to the PS3 via a USB port. The base also doubles as an IR receiver, which means you'll need to physically point the remote at the station, unlike Sony's own Bluetooth-powered remote.
The Darklite has a cool design and its $30 price tag isn't terrible, but I think a whole lot of home theater buffs just want a cheap USB IR receiver they can use with their universal remotes. Messiah is currently taking preorders for the Darklite DVD remote, with a shipping date of September 25.… Read more
Along with a few other tech journalists, I spent a couple of hours today over at the Westchester Country Club, which is gearing up for The Barclays PGA Tour event. What the hell was I doing there? Well, as part of a marketing deal with the PGA Tour, Mitsubishi is the "official large outdoor video display provider" of the Tour, and the PR team wanted us to see some of these displays in action--along with the Tour's ShotLink technology, which tracks players' shots almost down to the centimeter (the info is then displayed on those giant Mitsubishi scoreboards). That's all sorts of interesting if you're a golf fan, but things got a little sexier when Mitsubishi representatives took us into a hospitality suite, handed us each a pair of fancy 3D glasses (a little smaller than the ones shown in the photo), and showed us a demo of some new 3D-imaging technology the company's working on.
The demo was run from a massive Dell desktop and output onto a large DLP set. In an effort to inject new life into the fading rear-projection category, the company's pitch was that the 3D technology worked with existing DLP TVs and projectors (due to DLP's native 120Hz refresh rate, which allows you to split it into 60/60 for 3D) but not with LCD and plasma displays.
Most of us were pretty impressed by the demo, which included clips from movies, commercials, and sporting events. There was real depth to the 3D, and you got that 3D-feeling of objects poking out at you from the screen. All the demo material had been shot in 3D, but the kicker to the whole presentation was that Mitsubishi apparently has a Blu-ray player in its labs that can convert existing 2D movies into 3D on the fly. Better yet, according to company representatives, it may be available early next year.