Steve Jobs Biopic Rights May Go To Sony Pictures

Reports are that Sony Pictures is making a large bid for the official Steve Jobs biography in the realm of $1 million to $3 million. The project will be managed by MG360, which is the movie production partnership between Gordon and Management 360 that did The Social Network and Moneyball.

The book, simply titled Steve Jobs is authored by CNN chairman and Time Magazine managing editor Walter Isaacson. 448-page profile is based on over 40 interviews with the Apple co-founder and over 100 conversations with friends, family members, colleagues and competitors and has been moved up to release October 24.

Source: Deadline

iPad Dominates Tablet Web Browsing: comScore

According to comScore’s “Digital Omnivores: How Tablets, Smartphones and Connected Devices are Changing US Digital Media Consumption Habits,” iPad accounts for 97.2 percent of all tablet internet traffic in the U.S. What’s more iPad accounts for 46.8 percent of iOS Internet traffic versus the iPhone’s 42.6 percent.

“The popularization of smartphones and the introduction of tablets and other web-enabled devices…have contributed to an explosion in digital media consumption,” said comScore’s senior vice president of mobile Mark Donovan. “As these devices gain adoption, we have also seen the rise of the ‘digital omnivores’ – consumers who access content through several touchpoints during the course of their daily digital lives. In order to meet the needs of these consumers, advertisers and publishers must learn to navigate this new landscape so they develop cross-platform strategies to effectively engage their audiences.”

iOS devices account for the largest share of mobile internet traffic overall accounting for 58.5 percent of U.S. non-computer traffic in August, followed by Android with 31.9 percent. It’s telling give that Android is the most popular OS, with 43.7 per cent of the smartphone market.

Marvel Universe Online Developer Talks Problems With MMOs

Gazillion Entertainment’s president and COO David Brevik thinks that’s MMOs are in a rut trying to replicate World of Warcraft. He’s currently leading the development of Marvel Universe Online, and he thinks that the game’s freemium model is the way to launch a game.

“I have a lot of friends in the industry and… I mean, the budget for The Old Republic is outrageous, but it’s the last, large scale subscription game I can think of,” he said, adding about converting the game to F2P, “Part of the problem with it is that you aren’t going to get the results. This is kind of going back to my talk: if your gameplay is integrated with the very concepts that you’re trying and integrated with the platform you’re going to get a better experience. Converting something to free-to-play works to some degree, but to have the most success you have to have that as an integral part of the game itself.”

“And not only that, but what do you do with your existing subscribers,” he added. “How do they view this How do you treat them ‘I’ve already spent X amount of money on this game. What do I get out of this ‘ There are some tough problems to deal with if you don’t make a free-to-play game right off the bat.”


Facebook iPad App is Here

Facebook has announced that it is set to release an updated version of its iPhone application, designed to fill out the larger screen of the iPad. This comes after said was was repeatedly delayed during the summer, reportedly caused by Apple’s closeness to Twitter.

Another updated feature is that the new app has functionality with Facebook games like Words with Friends that the old app did not have. The official Facebook app for the iPhone and iPad app is free to download.


BioWare Responds To Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer Reports

Reports had been going out far and wide that Mass Effect 3 would indeed have some form of multiplayer. This has resulted in some official tweets on the matter from those involved confirming and teasing more about the multiplayer.

“There will be a multiplayer component for #ME3,” said BioWare’s Twitter feed. “Full details soon, so wait until then before making your decision. We think you’ll like it!”

“Yes, co-op MP missions for #ME3: they’re real, and they’re spectacular,” said Mass Effect 3‘s executive producer Casey Hudson on Twitter “Rest assured it’s nothing of what you’ve feared. More soon…”

CrowdStar Invests $250,000 In Six Mobile Developers

CrowdStar has announced that they have made their first investments in their StarFund investment fund. Six mobile start-ups will receive approximately $250,000 each and will likely create games for iOS and Android that appeal to a wide, female audience.

“We’ve had great inbound interest since we announced the fund,” said Jim Mills, former VantagePoint Capital Partners managing director, now director of the StarFund. “We are focusing on games that have mass-market appeal and multi-platform game play.”

Source: VentureBeat

Gaming Kids: 90 Percent In U.S. Do Game, Says NPD

According to the NPD, the growth of gamers ages 2-17 has outpaced the population growth of that age group. Over 90 percent of kids ages 2-17 (population of approximately 64 million) are gaming in the U.S., an increase of 9 points when compared to 2009.

“Year-to-date through August 2011, kids comprised 44 percent of new physical software dollar sales, representing a vitally important consumer segment for the games industry,” said Anita Frazier, industry analyst, The NPD Group. “Knowing how kids are spending their gaming time and dollars in both traditional and non-traditional outlets is key to staying relevant to this highly engaged audience.”

The growth of gamers has mostly been among kids ages 2-5, with females and teens ages 15-17 also contributing. Mobile devices have, not surprisingly, contributed quite a bit to in the increase of gaming; since 2009 gaming on mobile devices is up from 8 percent to 38 percent, gaming on traditional portable devices was up from 38 percent to 45 percent.

iOS and Android devices have proliferated greatly over the past couple of years, as has content for these systems. It is worth noting, however, that the amount spent on physical game products was over five times what was spent on app-capable devices in the past 3 months.

Rage On PC: id Explains The Issues

The game Rage was made on 64-bit PC systems and submitted to a “build system,” to build all the platforms. The game’s creative director Tim Willits says that helped produce a smooth console product at launch… but there are issues with the PC version.

“This system has led to incredibly solid and bug-free 360 and PS3 versions,” Willits said. “Unfortunately, we have had video driver issues that have caused problems and frustrations with our PC fans. Everyone at id Software is very upset by these issues which are mostly out of our control. We are working with both AMD/ATI and Nvidia to help them identify and fix the issues with their drivers. We’ve had assurances that these problems are being addressed and new drivers will be available soon.”

“The driver issues at launch have been a real cluster !@#$,” wrote id founder John Carmack. “We were quite happy with the performance improvements that we had made on AMD hardware in the months before launch; we had made significant internal changes to cater to what AMD engineers said would allow the highest performance with their driver and hardware architectures, and we went back and forth with custom extensions and driver versions.”

“We knew that all older AMD drivers, and some Nvidia drivers would have problems with the game, but we were running well in-house on all of our test systems. When launch day came around and the wrong driver got released, half of our PC customers got a product that basically didn’t work. The fact that the working driver has incompatibilities with other titles doesn’t help either. Issues with older / lower end /exotic setups are to be expected on a PC release, but we were not happy with the experience on what should be prime platforms.”

This sounds like an indication that Rage was not developed as a “PC first” game, and that’s a sentiment that Carmack seems to back up. “You can choose to design a game around the specs of a high-end PC and make console versions that fail to hit the design point, or design around the specs of the consoles and have a high-end PC provide incremental quality improvements,” Carmack replied. “We chose the latter.”

“We do not see the PC as the leading platform for games,” Carmack added. “That statement will enrage some people, but it is hard to characterize it otherwise; both console versions will have larger audiences than the PC version. A high end PC is nearly 10 times as powerful as a console, and we could unquestionably provide a better experience if we chose that as our design point and we were able to expend the same amount of resources on it. Nowadays most of the quality of a game comes from the development effort put into it, not the technology it runs on. A game built with a tenth the resources on a platform 10 times as powerful would be an inferior product in almost all cases.”

Source: Kotaku