Adult Videos Key To 3D TV Success?

There’s been a lot of talk about how video games, sports and Avatar will popularize the use of 3D televisions in the future, but one element hasn’t been talked about enough: adult films. In Japan in particular, adult videos equaled 108.6 billion yen ($1.2 billion) in 2009, or nearly a third of the overall video market.

“Adult videos will likely be an incentive for consumers to buy a 3-D TV,” said content analyst Yuji Fujimori, at Barclays Capital in Tokyo. “It s worth paying attention to the move because it s lack of content that s hindering expansion.”

Adult movie maker S1 No.1Style will release 3D X Mika Kayama and 3D X Yuma Asami, the first 3D porn movies in Japan, on June 7. Not so coincidentally , it comes the same month that Sony releases its 3-D Bravia TV models.

“I want to try it out,” said Satoshi Miyazaki, 33, who pays about 2,000 yen a month to watch adult cable channels. “I need something dramatic to justify replacing my TV. This could be the motivation.”

“Adult movie sales in Japan have dropped 15 percent since the peak year of 2006 due to the recession and free pornography online, but 3D may reverse the tide. 3D technology is just what the porn industry needed,” said Takashi Kadokura, an economist at BRICs Research Institute.

Sony expects 3D products to be a trillion yen business by March 2013. They’re looking to ship Vaio laptops that have 3D capabilities by the end of 2010, something Toshiya Shimizu may buy when it gets cheaper. “I want to rent the DVD first to see how good the image is,” said Shimizu. “I’d like to watch Yuma Asami in 3-D.”

Source: Business Week {link no longer active}

Steve Jobs Talks Microsoft, iPad And Post-PC World

Apple CEO Steve Jobs was as lively as ever at a recent discussion at the D8: All Things Digital conference. One of his first questions was about Apple surpassing Microsoft in market capitalization.

“For those of us who have been in the industry a long time, it’s surreal,” Jobs said. “But it doesn’t matter very much; it’s not what’s important. … It’s not why any of our customers buy our products. So I think it’s good for us to keep that in mind.”

Jobs was asked about the decision to exclude Flash from the iPhone, and he stated that HTML5 was on the rise to replace Flash. “Sometimes when we get rid of things like the floppy-disc drive in the first iMac, people call us crazy,” Jobs said.

When asked about the platform war with Microsoft, Jobs had an interesting response. “We never saw ourselves in a platform war with Microsoft,” he said. “Maybe that’s why we lost we saw ourselves building the best computers we could build.”

Jobs’ response to why he liked the consumer market over the business-enterprise market apparently amused some. “What I love about the consumer market and I always hated about the enterprise market is we come up with a product, we try to tell everybody about it and every person votes for it themselves. They vote yes or no,” said Jobs. “The enterprise market, it’s not so simple the people that use the product don’t decide for themselves. The people that make those decisions sometimes are confused.”

The way Jobs tells it, the iPad was actually conceived before the iPhone, when he wanted to make a display he could type on, and seeing it working made him think, “My God, we can build a phone out of this.”

“When we got our wind back and thought we could take on something next, [we] pulled the tablet off the shelf, took everything we learned from the phone and went to work on the tablet,” he said.

Boldly, Jobs predicted that PCs are going to be phased out by other computing devices, but didn’t go so far as to predict what device. “Is it the iPad Who knows Will it happen five years or seven years from now, who knows ” said Jobs. “But I think we’re headed in that direction.”

Source: Seattle Times

Michael Jordan’s Back For NBA 2K11

2K Sports today announced that Michael Jordan will grace the cover of NBA 2K11, confirming recent rumors. The current Charlotte Bobcats owner won six championships and six NBA Finals MVP awards while with the Chicago Bulls during the ’90s, and continues to be a global marketing icon.

“We’ve made a lot of progress over the past 10 years, but we know we have the best NBA video game ever made here,” said Jason Argent, vice president of marketing for 2K Sports. “So we thought to ourselves how can we embody that and there was only one person on that list who we wanted to have and that was Michael Jordan. Actually getting this done is the most ridiculous win of all-time.”

“Michael’s last appearance in a video game was in 2004 and over that time the video game industry had continued to grow,” said Estee Portnoy, Jordan s business manager. “We had been hearing that there was demand from the gamers to have him in the game and this came along and made a lot of sense.”

Jordan’s appearance in the game is being kept a secret for now. Argent predicted that NBA 2K11 will be the best selling game in the franchise’s ten-year history.

“It’s an honor to be featured on the cover of NBA 2K11,” Jordan said, in a statement. “I have no doubt that NBA 2K11 will be a big hit with gamers and basketball fans alike. I m looking forward to getting back out on the court, virtually.”

Source: CNBC

Rare Re-Branding

Rare celebrated its 25th anniversary with a re-branding. The new logo will be accompanied by a full website relaunch at soon.

“Both Rare and the games industry have seen massive changes over the past 25 years, and right now it feels as if both we and the industry are continuing to evolve at an ever-increasing pace,” said Rare Head of Studio Mark Betteridge. “With this landmark anniversary coming up, and knowing that we have a really exciting future ahead, we felt now was the time to have a new image more in keeping with an innovative and creative entertainment company which aspires to be around for at least the next 25 years!”

Rare has a long and storied history in the gaming industry, though the perception remains that the studio has been listless since founders Chris and Tim Stamper left the company in early 2007. With this re-branding and new Project Natal projects in the works, Rare is no doubt looking to recapture its mojo.

Metal Gear Solid Movie Discussed By David Hayter

The Metal Gear Solid series can claim a lot of influences from movies in its presentation and was instrumental in maturing the storytelling of the gaming medium as a whole. Yet, no movie is in the plans for Metal Gear Solid despite the scores of other gaming IP that are; it hasn’t been through lack of trying, however, as the voice of Solid Snake and screenwriter David Hayter can attest in a recent blog post about the movie adaptation he wrote for the game.

“They ve been trying to work out a deal between [creator Hideo Kojima] and [Sony],” said Hayter. “A couple of years ago, a producer friend of mine asked me if I would be interested in doing the adaptation. And I said Of course. I know it pretty well. I think I can say without contradiction that I know it better than any screenwriter on the planet. I ve said every word that Snake has said. So I felt well-qualified.”

What ultimately happened to the script is unknown, but it is rumored that the powers-that-be at Metal Gear Solid publisher Konami weren’t able to agree on how to proceed with it . “On top of that, I don t believe they were ever able to successfully close a deal between Mr. Kojima and Sony, added Hayter. This is all just stuff I ve heard.

Speaking about the script, Hayter said, “I did come up with a pitch for the movie which I thought was pretty cool and I would still love to do. But there are far larger issues in terms of who s going to get the rights to do it and what sort of involvement Mr. Kojima is going to have. All that needs to be worked out before I would ever come up.”

With the possibility still existing that Metal Gear Solid could turn into a movie one day, Hayter is keeping quiet about the specific details of his script. “I really want to spring some things on people,” he explained. “Having been intimately involved with Metal Gear, I would like to give people a story that will grab the fans. The fans will know the context that we re talking about once they see the trailers. They’ll say ‘Oh my god, they’re going there’. But they won t quite know how the story is going to unfold or what some of the big surprises are going to be. And that s really the only way to keep a movie [adaptation] interesting.”

Source: MTV

Microsoft Talks Windows Security

Insiders recently indicated that Google was moving away from using Windows internally due to security reasons. In response to this, Microsoft offered a blog post supporting their own case.

“There is some irony here that is hard to overlook,” writes Brandon LeBlanc. “For starters, check out this story from Mashable a few months ago where it was reported that Yale University had halted their move to Gmail (and their move to Google s Google Apps for Education package) citing both security and privacy concerns.”

“When it comes to security, even hackers admit we re doing a better job making our products more secure than anyone else,” noted LeBlanc. “And it s not just the hackers; third party influentials and industry leaders like Cisco tell us regularly that our focus and investment continues to surpass others.”

The post goes on to note that Microsoft updates Windows frequently to close security loopholes and that Windows 7 has additional features, like BitLocker, Parental Controls and Address Space Layout Randomization to protect its users.

Source: The Windows Blog

Sony Announces PSP Deals

Sony Computer Entertainment today announced a new initiative to give a shot in the arm to its PSP business. Firstly, they will start offering a new “Favorites” software line which will offer a variety of titles, including LocoRoco, Patapon, and SOCOM: Fireteam Bravo at the price of $9.99 at certain retailers.

“PSP is the premiere destination for full-scale, console quality gaming experiences on-the-go, and we’re very pleased to be able to bring our consumers such tremendous value,” said Scott A. Steinberg, Vice President, Product Marketing, SCEA. “These initiatives not only add value to the platform overall, but also complement the robust software lineup we’ll see from both first and third-party publishers in 2010. It is easier now more than ever for new and existing PSP owners to build up their gaming libraries with amazing content.”

Additionally, new PSPgo owners will have access to a “Digital Game Pack” where they can download LittleBigPlanet, Ratchet and Clank : Size Matters and SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Fireteam Bravo 3 for free.  Sony also will add four new titles to the $19.99 Greatest Hits line up, incluing Gran Turismo, Resistance: Retribution and Secret Agent Clank.

AT&T Changes Up Unlimited Plans

AT&T today announced that it would be introducing new, “cheaper” wireless plans for its customers. While technically true, the 200 MB $15-a-month entry plan and a $25-a-month 2 GB plan replace the $29.99 unlimited plan for devices like the iPad.

“AT&T helps mobilize everything on the Internet your favorite web sites, TV shows, music, games and social networks. Virtually everything previously done while sitting at a computer can now be done on the go,” said Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets. “To give more people the opportunity to experience these benefits, we’re breaking free from the traditional ‘one-size-fits-all’ pricing model and making the mobile Internet more affordable to a greater number of people.”

Current smart phone customers will not have to switch to the new plans, but can do so without extending their contract. An additional $20 a month will land users new tethering options for their phone and both plans have unlimited access to AT&T Wi-Fi hot spots.

According to AT&T, 98 percent of its smart phone customers use under 2 GB of data a month, while 65 percent use under 200 MB, which is a tacit explanation of the change.

Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Launch Activities For Latin America

Konami and Sony Computer Entertainment America announced recently that they’ll be engaging in special launch activities in Latin America for Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. As such, SCEA will offer a Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker exclusive Latin America Kit, available at major retail locations in Costa Rica, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Panama, Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua.

Available on June 8, the Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker exclusive Latin America Kit will feature Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker on UMD, a “Skull-Camo” PSP-3000 system and exclusive in-game content like the Camouflage Uniform with FOX logos and Stealth Gun feature.

Additionally, SCEA and Konami will hold a special launch event in Costa Rica on June 2. This event is the first of its kind to happen in the country, which is the historical setting for the events of Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker.