Devices Of The Decade

Writing for Business Insider, Jay Yarow says the 2000s have been the decade of gadgets.   Many of the devices now populating homes, offices and everywhere in between are based on technology made approachable and mass marketed in the past ten years.  Yarow rounds up the 15 consumer tech gadgets that have had the most profound effect on people’s lives.


Read more at Business Insider {link no longer active}.

Retailers Get Social For The Holidays

Writing for Ad Age, Natalie Zmuda and Kunur Patel look at the surge in retailers using social media in their holiday marketing campaigns.  As the writers point out, a survey from researcher BDO Seidman shows that the percentage of retailers using social media has jumped more than tenfold since 2007.  More than half of those surveyed say they now incorporate social nets into their marketing, with 76 percent on Facebook and 50 percent on Twitter.  Zmuda and Patel look at holiday campaigns being executed by ten major retailers, including Best Buy, Walmart, Target, Toys ‘R’ Us and Amazon, to highlight which ones are hitting homeruns, and which haven t exactly stepped up to the plate.

Read more at Ad Age {like no longer active}.

Nintendo: GTA Title’s Performance On DS ‘Frustrating’

Nintendo of America marketing head Cammie Dunaway has suggested that Rockstar might see better sales for its DS game GTA: Chinatown Wars with a more sustained marketing campaign.  Kotaku reported on her comments made in a video interview with MTV News.  Dunaway says Nintendo thinks the game will have a long tail if there’s continued marketing support to help people discover it.  She added that the old method of running a TV campaign for some weeks and expecting sales momentum doesn t work because new consumers are constantly coming onto game platforms.

Read more at Kotaku.

Study Predicts Growth Boom For 3D Games

Research firm Insight Media has a study forecasting booming growth for 3D displays and 3D games over the next five years, reports Edge-Online.  The firm predicts the worldwide market for 3D capable displays will reach 40 million sets by 2014.  That will represent a huge market potential for games as systems such as PS3 start to support 3D games.  Insight Media analyst Dale H. Maunu told Edge that the firm monitored hundreds of hours of Stereoscopic 3D gaming without any reports of eye strain.

Read more at Edge-Online {link no longer active}.

Fox To Air IGN Game Guide TV Special

December 12 is shaping up to be passive entertainment day for gamers.  IGN Entertainment has paired up with Fox to air a holiday videogame gift guide TV special on Saturday, Dec. 12, the same day that Spike is broadcasting the 2009 Video Game Awards.  IGN’s show is hosted by Jessica Chobot and fellow IGN editors.  It s focusing on what games people should be playing now or buying as holiday gifts, but IGN has managed to get a high-profile preview exclusive for the program.  They’ll be debuting the cinematic trailer for EA’s Mass Effect 2.   Listings for air times are at IGN.

Read more at IGN.

Nielsen Says Digital Growing But TV Still Dominates

A fourth quarter 2009 study by Nielsen shows U.S. viewing habits on digital platforms growing but television still dominating, with 99 percent of all video content still viewed on traditional TV.  As reported in Adweek, the researcher’s A2/M2 Three Screen Report shows significant growth in online video, up nearly 35 percent since Q3 2009.  The study showed average Americans spent four hours per week on the internet, with 22 minutes of it watching online video.  In comparison, TV viewing took up 31 hours per week on average.

Television viewing using DVR is also on the rise, up more than 21 percent since last quarter.  The study shows the average person spent 31 minutes a week watching programs on DVR.  Nielsen also released figures from the quarterly report showing mobile video usage is highest among teens, measured at seven hours per month.

Read more at Adweek {link no longer active}.

Uber-Effort, After All

It s not that the[a]listdaily would eat crow just because someone served it.  Ok, maybe if it s in a Broodwich.  But it is hard to argue with numbers.

Ubisoft pointed out to us that the videos for No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle called out in yesterday’s newsletter for being too quick and quirky have been getting solid traffic and high marks.  A quick check today on GameTrailers showed that the three shorts had pulled in well over 100,000 views, and 8 or higher out of 10 average ratings from viewers.  Ubisoft says the videos were part of a larger video campaign giving major game sites exclusive content to get top billing, including a couple more meaty videos for GameSpot and IGN.

Facebook’s New Privacy Controls

Facebook has implemented new privacy controls giving users the ability to flag specific pieces of content as public or private, reports AP.  The social net started requiring its more than 350 million users to review their privacy settings and learn about the new function yesterday.  Facebook users can now select specific pieces of content and make it accessible to friends only, friends of friends, or everyone.   The everyone setting is not available for users under 18 years old.   Users can also create custom groups, such as AP’s example college buddies, to give them access to specific content.  Read more from AP.

In a separate report covered by Mashable, Facebook revealed that Facebook Connect has more than 60 million users connecting 80,000 web sites.  The company launched the feature a little over a year ago.  Mashable calculates that the current tally means nearly 160,000 new users have been adopting Facebook Connect every day.  Read more at Mashable.

California Film Organizatin Says Redbox Threatens Movie Industry

The organization that oversees Southern California’s lucrative film economy has released research pinpointing cheap DVD kiosk operator Redbox as a threat to the industry.  As reported in Mashable, the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation estimates that discounted movie prices from Redbox s dollar-a-day DVD rentals will ultimately cost the film industry $1 billion in annual revenue and threaten more than 9,000 jobs.  LAEDC says the revenue loss is based on customers steered away from DVD purchases and full-price rentals.  It estimates that the billion dollar loss translates to $520 million loss in profits to motion picture companies, which it then breaks down based on full re-investment into film production as effecting 9,280 jobs with annual earnings of about $395 annually.  The potential effect of that loss of earnings on California would be about $30 million lost in tax revenues.

Mashable points to possible bias in LAEDC’s findings, a corporation that benefits from entertainment industry money spent in California.  The organization has also targeted Redbox by highlighting the very sensitive area of potential tax revenue loss for severely cash-strapped California.  For its part, LAEDC admits that factors other than Redbox’s popularity, such as digital downloads, are draws on the entertainment industry’s profits.  Major studios have targeted Redbox, as well as Netflix, as immediate threats and asked that the companies refrain from stocking new DVD releases for 30 days.  Netflix is considering the request, but Redbox has filed a countersuit against several major studios.  The company claims lack of support by film companies has forced it to purchase new releases at Walmart to stock its rental kiosks.

Read more at Mashable.

GameTrailers PlayStation Gift Guide

GameTrailers is featuring an interactive gift guide for Sony PSP and PS3.  The guide is searchable for each platform by game genre and ESRB rating.  It’s perfect for parents wondering how to sidestep junior’s request for Modern Warfare 2 and find the perfect E-rated party game for the wrong platform to ruin Christmas morning.

Check it out, and make sure you re listed, at GameTrailers {link no longer active}.