Sony: PS4 Sales Will Beat PS3

The PlayStation 3 did reasonably well in this generation of games, selling 80 million consoles despite the Wii and the Xbox 360’s popularity. Still, PlayStation CEO Andrew House believes that the PlayStation 4 could do even better.

Speaking with MCV, House explained, “It has an opportunity to significantly exceed what we’ve been able to achieve with PS3 and there’s a couple of reasons for that. We start off with a price point that is much more consumer friendly than was there for the PS3 (which launched at $499-$599).”

“Also, one of the success stories for the business as a whole has been our ability to open up new geographies for video games over the last five years. You are seeing opportunities for new markets that we haven’t tapped into. The other point is that we took several years to take PS3 from being a dual function device to a multi-functional entertainment device. PS4 arrives with a full suite of those non-game entertainment services right from day one,” House continued.

“And that’s important because there will be someone who wants this as a games device, but the fact it is a great place to view BBC iPlayer, for example, gives  other family members reason to use it. That is crucial in broadening what the console’s reach could be.”

The PlayStation 4 is currently available in stores

Source: MCV UK

GameStick Gets Ubisoft Game

The GameStick Android-based console is making the rounds in retail, but the company is still looking to add some big names to its game library. Today, it added the Prince of Persia to its line-up.

GameStick as announced a partnership with Ubisoft that will bring the action/adventure title Prince of Persia: The Shadow and the Flame to the platform. This marks the first major publisher to hop on board the format, with others sure to follow sometime in 2014.

No other gaming projects have been announced through the partnership yet, and The Shadow and the Flame doesn’t have a release date. However, you can expect more information – and the game – in 2014.

Source: Engadget

China Mobile Gets iPhones, Huge Sales Predicted

Now that Apple has (finally!) put together a distribution deal with China Mobile, high expectations are in place for iPhone devices in the country. An estimate from Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster indicates that iPhones could see huge sales when they are available next year in China.

China Mobile, with more than 700 million subscribers in the country, could sell 17 million total iPhones next year – approximately ten percent of the carrier’s 3G subscriber base, though only two percent of its total subscribers. Still, that could mean a big sales boost  for Apple, equal to more than a month of worldwide sales of iPhones.

Meanwhile, Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White paints a bigger picture for Chinese iPhone sales, with an estimated 20 to 24 million units sold through China Mobile.

“We expect a strong marketing push to follow the official announcement, and that is what is critical,” said Wedge Partners analyst Brian Blair, following his estimates of 18 to 20 million. “It’s Apple’s job to turn the Chinese consumer away from entrenched brands like Samsung.”

Source: All Things D

Kabam Lands Stadium Naming Rights

Kabam, a mobile publisher who has gained popularity with such releases as Kingdoms of Camelot and The Hobbit: Armies of the Third Age, is taking its game to the next level – college football.

The studio will pay $18 million over 15 years for the naming rights to California Memorial Stadium at the University of California’s Berkeley campus, according to the company and UC Berkeley. This is the most lucrative naming rights deal in the history of college sports.

“We have such a strong ties to Cal. The original business plan, for doing social networking, was created in a Cal classroom,” said Kabam CEO Kevin Chou. “It wasn’t the game company. But of the four co-founders, three of us went to Cal and that’s how we go to know each other.”

Kabam will also finance a scholarship, and several execs will be guest-lecturing at the university in the coming years.

Source: GamesIndustry International

Jetpack PC Backs Your TV

Say hello to the Jetpack, a SteamOS PC that hides out behind your TV.

This new PC, designed by hardware manufacturer Piixl, features a sleek, thin body and run’s Valve’s Linux-based Steam operating system…so it has plenty of power. It supports high-end components such as overclocked Intel Core i7 processors, the latest graphics cards from Nvidia, including the Titan and GTX780, and up to 1TB of SSD storage. Users could also put Windows or Linux on the Jetpack.

The real stand-out feature, though, is the system’s ability to latch onto the back of your TV, like an actual jetpack. That way, it stays out of view, while still giving you the game experience you want.

“Jetpack is designed for gamers that do not want to compromise on performance nor interior design,” said Piixl managing director Francois-Xavier Gardes. “Whether wall-mounted or on a table, its presence stays smart and minimalistic while providing leading edge-performance and tweak potential virtually on par with a full-tower.”

The Jetpack is expected to release on January 1st for a retail cost of $1,000. And yes, hackers, it will be enabled for modding.

Source: VentureBeat

Twitter’s Ads Set To Target

It was only this past summer when Twitter whet advertisers’ appetites for better, more targeted ads. Yesterday in a blog post Twitter revealed that global availability for advertising to tailored audiences is now ready for prime time.

‘Tailored audiences’ is Twitter’s way of saying better ways of identifying existing and potential customers on Twitter. A beta test showed a huge bump in engagement rates of 45 percent when targeting the right audiences. Not only that, but Twitter wants to make sure your dollars are stretching. Cost-per-customer acquisition was decreased by 74 percent.

So how does this work Twitter sets up an example with a fictitious hotel chain:

“To get the special offer to those people who are also on Twitter, the hotel brand may share with us browser-related information (browser cookie ID) through an ads partner. We can then match that information to Twitter accounts in order to show the matched users a Promoted Tweet with the travel deal.”


Twitter has partnered up with AdRoll, BlueKai, Dstillery, Quantcast, ValueClick, Lotame, Chango and [x+1] as approved ad partners to create these ads and help transfer audience data to Twitter.

Source: TechCrunch

Android Flavors Taste Like Money

Android devices have been outselling iOS devices for some time now, but Apple still has some advantages over Google in this competition. The primary one is that apps tend to monetize better on iOS devices, and one of the main reasons usually cited for this is the fragmentation of Android, both in the vast array of different devices and in the versions of the operating system. Apple’s iOS7 saw an incredible 22 percent adoption rate just 24 hours after it first became available, and now stands at 74 percent of iOS devices running the latest version of iOS. Meanwhile, Android users are slow to update to the latest version of Android (only 1 percent have KitKat), and in some cases their devices won’t support newer versions of the OS. The result is a market with many different versions of the Android OS.

Mobile ad network Tapjoy has provided data on the monetization rates for each of the Android operating system versions. The data shows that Jellybean has surpassed Gingerbread as the platform’s highest monetizing OS, but the larger story here is what that means for KitKat and developers thinking of building apps for the latest release.

Last year, Tapjoy’s data showed that Android ARPU (average revenue per user) rates got better with each subsequent release. But this year, the playing field is more level, with the most prominent OS versions monetizing about the same. That trend indicates that fragmentation may be less of an issue for developers than in the past, since they can now expect similar monetization from users regardless of which OS version they’re on. It also means that there may be no real need to rush out and start developing new features based on KitKat.

The [a]list daily spoke with Tapjoy’s chief marketing officer, Peter Dille, about the findings and what it means for Android development going forward.

The trends noted by Tapjoy will help monetization on Android narrow the gap with iOS in ARPU, but it’s not a complete win, according to Dille. “The gap is definitely becoming smaller, but we don’t see Android completely catching up to iOS any time too soon, Dille said. “iOS has a big lead on Android because its in-app payments are more effective — mainly owing to the fact that Apple already has so many consumer’s payment information, which makes in-app payments more streamlined. This will make it hard for Android to completely catch up to iOS in overall ARPU.”

Google has been encouraging users to update their operating systems for a while with limited success, but Dille feels that may improve. “KitKat [the latest version of Android] was a great step in this direction, because of what they did to make it available on a broader variety of phones,” noted Dille. “We expect that once Google works with the hardware manufacturers to make KitKat available, the updates will happen more quickly than previous OS versions.”

The overall market picture for Android developers in 2014 seems “very promising,” according to Dille. “Android’s market share continues to skyrocket, and it recently caught up to iOS in volume of apps available,” Dille pointed out. “Its lead in tablets is especially strong, and we see that as one of the most important markets in 2014 and beyond. We believe that KitKat is going to attract even more device manufacturers, which in turn will lead to more innovation and even better devices. So the developers who are building for Android right now are in good shape, and they’ll have access to more and more consumers throughout the next year or two.”

China Rises In ‘Battlefield 4’

Already available for Premium members (and releasing for all on December 17), China Rising will open a whole new front for Battlefield 4 players to fight on. This trailer frames the conflict on China’s mainland, promising lots of chaos with new vehicles and high-tech military equipment.

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Kevin Bacon Says Shift Your Shopping

Kevin Bacon (here posing as Melvin Macon) wants people to shift their shopping for good in this hilariously low-tech infomercial.