Sony Interactive Entertainment announced that the cumulative sales of PlayStation systems worldwide reached 525,3 million Noting overcoming the milestone of half a billion of devices sold, Sony has announced a limited edition console 500 Million Limited Edition Pro PS4.
The product is made in dark blue color. Moreover, the body panels have a transparency that allows you to see the contours of the installed components. By the way, among the latter is the hard disk capacity of 2 TB.
Kit 500 Million Limited Edition PS4 Pro is made in the appropriate style wireless controller DualShock 4, PlayStation Camera module and the headset.
Results will be released 50,000 copies of a limited edition console that will be available in different parts of the world. Each console will get a copper insert on the front panel with a unique number.
The price of 500 Million Limited Edition PS4 Pro — $ 500. The controller 500 Million Limited Edition DualShock 4 will be offered separately for $ 65. Well, for $ 100 anyone can purchase an optional headset 500 Million Limited Edition Gold Wireless Headset.
Vice President, partnerships and income Ubisoft Chris early (Chris Early) explained that the company, famous series of Assassin’s Creed and projects in the franchise, Tom Clancy’s, really looking forward to when technology will be able to provide game streaming through the cloud to increase the popularity of the line publishers.
The company believes that there are a large number of people who are willing to play into her food, if she will be able to provide service faster delivery of content to any device. “We all have friends who stopped playing the game because not bought a console last generation or have not updated your PC, although still remember about the games. We saw it when recently introduced [Starlink], where Fox McCloud from Star Fox will be a playable character. At the press conference was an amazing outpouring of nostalgia,” said Chris on the panel, sponsored by Akamai.
More and more people are talking about cloud gaming and the possibilities not only in the future, but now, to put this idea into reality. However, the problem, beyond the technical, is that existing business models unprofitable. At least, so says Ubisoft. “We have to find a way which will allow us to take advantage of this form of distribution and increase the targeted market. We must find a way of monetization, said Chris. — We can be part of some subscription service. In any case, the question returns to what is there a profitable way [to offer] the cloud game.”
Moreover, Chris Earley believes that the subscription of the game actually hinders the development of the publishing house. He gave the example of PlayStation Now: “I think it’s a great technology for streaming content, but we are not earning money as a publisher — we do not earn as much money as we earn, when we just put the products on sale. So why, from the point of view of publishers to do this?”.
According to him, PlayStation Plus is a great service for players. It allows you to access draft on different devices — you only have to pay monthly. And it works. But not for a third party company. The user is limited to the subscription plan, where publishers just can’t make money. “On the other hand, you can just sell the game and let people play for five minutes while it is loading or in addition to pay you to have fast access to the product in other places. With the subscription you’re just handing out,” said Chris.
Interestingly, in analysis report Piper Jaffray also focus on streaming the games, not subscriptions, in the manner of Xbox Game Pass or Netflix.
Electronic Arts after the purchase in may of this year, the company GameFly is actively working to launch its own cloud service for streaming games. Cnet reporters visited the company and got acquainted with the course of Affairs. In particular, Kyle Fujita (Fujita Kyle), testing the quality of the products of Electronic Arts, showed the gameplay of Titanfall 2 on a normal TV connected to a $ 20 controller and high-speed Internet connection.
As Ubisoft, EA believes that such cloud services are the future of games, because if you have a good connection to play in AAA-projects can be in any place, by analogy with viewing Netflix on inexpensive laptops, tablets and even smartphones with different operating systems.
“Now only the beginning of technology to the market, said a senior technical Director EA Ken moss (Ken Moss). — However, these services have existed for several years.” Mr. moss previously participated in the creation of the search unit at Microsoft, which later evolved into Bing, and for more than two decades working on the development of various large-scale online services and services. All this experience will be useful to promote cloud-based EA games. The publisher believes that technological and economic changes that have turned the music and film industry, happen in the gaming industry.
“The combination of streaming and subscriptions will really change the way to access games,” said Mr. moss. He still refuses to tell how much will cost EA a new service or when the service is launched. But the launch could happen in the next couple of years.
In General, the idea of streaming games is not new — it for about a decade. First companies like OnLive and Gaikai showed in 2010 and 2011 that the cloud game is possible. Sony also made a big bet on technology in 2012, absorbing and using Gaikai to create a streaming service PlayStation Now. She was launched two years later and provided the PS4 backwards compatible with old games.
But these services have not yet changed the gaming industry. A sad example of the financial failure of OnLive (closed in 2015) cooled the ardor of many companies, obdumyvaya output in this area. The problem was partly technical: the quality of the OnLive service for servers and poor Internet connection was mediocre, but the lag is quite frequent.
EA said that over the past few years since the closure of OnLive technology has become much cheaper broadband, quality Internet access is more widespread, and people become accustomed to different services with a monthly paid subscription. “Convenience will win, — says head of design at EA, Patrick Soderlund (Patrick Söderlund). — Our task is to technically functioned like a watch and it turned out to be attractive in price and services.”
Over the past few months in the gaming industry sounded the most different hearings, affecting not only the PlayStation 5 or the Xbox Next. The most interesting communications related, perhaps Google plans: in February, first heard reports that the tech giant is working on a streaming gaming service Yeti and game console.
Over the past months gaming resource Kotaku spoke with five of his informants and sources knowledgeable about the plans of Google, and found out some details. First of all, they confirmed the work of Google on some streaming platform and the development of a hardware gaming console. But the sources also added that the search giant is moving in the third direction, Google aims to enlist the support of game developers, both through aggressive recruitment and by acquisitions of entire studios.
In the last decade, Google is considering gaming initiatives. For example, in 2014, the company reported actively fought for the absorption of Twitch, though in the end lost Amazon. Years there are rumors that Google wants to create a console based on Android, similar to the Fire TV from Amazon, but it never happened. In 2016 Niantic Labs, founded as an internal startup of Google, has achieved tremendous success with the Pokémon Go, but the previous year it was allocated in the independent company. Finally, Google has a long history of hiring game developers for projects that never materialized.
In recent months, however, rumors are getting louder. At the game developers conference GDC 2018 in March this year, Google representatives met with several major game companies to evaluate the interest in their streaming platform, code-named Yeti. Google also had meetings during E3 in June 2018 in Los Angeles, and, according to sources, the company wants not just to attract game developers to work with the Yeti, but sometimes expresses a willingness to buy the Studio as a whole.
What streaming platform is going to create Google? As in the case with the GeForce Now NVIDIA’s platform Yeti provides all the games on powerful servers, and transmitting to the client system, real-time video. With a quality Internet connection, even on the cheapest PC you can play games of high class. This releases the hardware barriers and big-budget games can reach a wider audience, because the players do not require expensive graphics card or a powerful console to run them. One of the informants described the Yeti: “Imagine that you play The Witcher 3 on the tab of Google Chrome”.
Of course, it is necessary to solve problems of input lag and quality loss through compression — that’s what ruined such ambitious services like OnLive. One of the informants spoke about the idea of closer integration of the Yeti is owned by Google, YouTube. For example, when faced with a difficult boss or puzzle in the game, it will be possible at the touch of a button, view the hint in the record of the passage of this moment on YouTube.
Far fewer rumors sources Kotaku heard in respect of the hardware gaming platform Google. We know one thing: the console is being developed with an eye on a close relationship with the streaming service. It is unknown if Google wants to compete, in terms of technical characteristics with the following versions of PlayStation and Xbox, or it was just the terminal that you created with a view to work with the streaming service.
It is worth noting that the “flow noise” in the gaming industry lately has increased. The head of Ubisoft in June said that the PS5 and Xbox Next may be the last such consoles, after which the industry will move to streaming games. And the other day he told that the publisher wants to switch to a streaming model of games, although not yet figured out how to earn it.
During the press conference of Microsoft at E3 2018, the Executive President of the gaming Corporation Phil Spencer (Phil Spencer) not only confirmed the start of work on the next generation Xbox, but also spoke about creating a streaming game service that will allow you to run any game on any device. Finally, Electronic Arts in may of this year the company was bought GameFly and is now actively preparing to launch its own cloud service for streaming games. She even showed her work to reporters.
Sony continues without much noise and applications to develop to their paid streaming service PlayStation Now, the main purpose of which is to ensure compatibility with PS4 games generation PS3 and PS2 (as well as access them on a PC) via cloud streaming. Currently, the library of PS Now includes more than 650 games.
But the main problem with these services is maintained — speed Network access to users. The transfer quality of the video stream means downloading large amounts of data, it is difficult to count in many cities of the planet. Google Fiber is an initiative to deploy superior broadband connection that allows you to reach speeds of 100 times more than most U.S. households. Although Fiber is being implemented with difficulty even in the US and is still working only in a few cities, the service shows what Google could in theory solve the problems with bandwidth, as no other gaming company can not. Google also has servers around the world, giving the company a big head start. Oh and don’t forget about the monstrous amounts of money at the disposal of the search giant.
However, some had heard of the Yeti, the developers who spoke with journalists, skeptical. Google is too well known a lot of abandoned projects. In addition, even in more rural parts of America the Corporation is unlikely to come to deploy adequate infrastructure — to say nothing of the rest of the world? If Google will release its own console, and what games will be supported start? That will force developers to port their projects to the new platform? The history of the gaming industry is littered with consoles that tried to challenge Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft — and many of them failed due to the lack of appealing exclusives.
Other tech companies yet not too well. Amazon, for example, in the last four years has spent many millions of dollars to attract the best developers to create their own game engine and by companies such as Twitch and Double Helix. Even with three full studios of Amazon have not yet been able to offer a really big game and canceled multiplayer sports project Breakaway last year.
One thing is for sure: Google wants to try. In January 2018, the company hired Phil Harrison (Phil Harrison), a veteran of the gaming industry, who has long held senior positions in the PlayStation and Xbox. Google is also seen in the mass involvement of experienced developers and marketers of EA, Sony and many other leading companies. In General, the money to start the company. And only time will tell whether materialized Yeti in one form or another or will go the way of Google Glass.
According to The Information, Google is working on a subscription streaming game service. It will work through the digital media player Chromecast, or yet to be announced gaming console.
The service, codenamed Yeti similar to PlayStation Now: the user pays for the subscription and gets access to a large collection of games that work on a remote computer and transmitted to the device over the Internet. According to The Information, the early version of the platform was created to Chromecast, but does not specify how the media player could use the controller. Later, the company began to experiment with their own console and controller.
The project is led by two top-Manager of Google in the area of Vice President of product management Mario Queiroz (Mario Queiroz) and Vice-President, development Majd Bakar (Majd Bakar). From this we can conclude that the service will still work on the new hardware platform.
Yeti is in development for about two years. Google was going to start it in the Christmas season of 2017, but for some reason postponed the project.
Service eventually you may not see the light of day. But it is worth considering that recently, the California giant has hired Phil Harrison (Phil Harrison) is a man who has been in the position of the top Manager gaming division of Sony for 15 years, and for three years was engaged in the Xbox platform at Microsoft. Harrison just reports to the senior Vice President of Google devices Rick Osterloh (Rick Osterloh), so we can assume that work on the console the company is still underway.
Sony PlayStation VR is one of the most successful games of virtual reality helmets on the market. Of course, it has been achieved, primarily due to PS4, but still. Interestingly, Richard Marx (Richard Marks), engaged in the design of this device, moved to a mysterious division of gaming consoles Google. He worked at Sony since 1999 in the Magic Lab team working on new and promising technologies.
Among the projects that had a hand specialist, was the controller movements PlayStation Move, EyeToy camera for the PS2 and various other pilot projects, is never embodied in commercial products and once described Mr. Marx as “pie in the sky”. Perhaps now inside Google it again will not waste your time on a bird in the hand and try to get the crane?
At least we know that the industry veteran will work with another former employee of Sony, Phil Harrison (Phil Harrison), who in January announced joining the Google Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP). To welcome a new employee, Mr. garrison wrote on Twitter: “Pleased that Richard Marx joins Google. An exciting addition to the team ATAP!”.
Already, we have heard rumors that Google is working on a certain game console, which will be focused on cloud-based games. However, very little is known yet except that the project is the code name for the Yeti. Generally, the idea of streaming games lately increasingly grasps the leading companies in the industry: Microsoft, EA, and Ubisoft — and Google has a huge cloud infrastructure (along with an incredible installation base in the form of smartphones), it is not out of this series.
In a statement, the resource Venture Beat, the search giant said: “ATAP is located at the intersection of scientific research and practical applications. Our goal is to remove the difficult technological barriers that stand between ideas and their implementation. We are very pleased that Richard has joined the team and look forward to his participation in our work.”
Of course, the console and gaming service, Google — curious and potentially exciting idea. However, the skills of Richard Marx would want the search giant and on a much more prosaic reason: for instance, the development platform of virtual and augmented reality ARCore. It is quite possible, because Apple is making a big bet on the development of ARKit.
In June, 2018, best-selling game console in the United States from the point of view of quantitative indicators was neither PS4 or Nintendo Switch and not the Xbox One. It was the NES Classic, which helped to increase sales of hardware game systems by 52% compared to last year and reached $1.1 billion contribution has also made the success of the SNES Classic and the three main consoles.
According to the NPD report for June 2018, the total expenditure on hardware and software, accessories and game cards grew by 25% compared to the same period last year and amounted to $1.1 billion this is largely due to higher sales of hardware, because the income from the games even slightly decreased. And for the first half overall expenditure on all categories has increased by 17% to $6 billion compared to last year, and this time accessories and game cards showed the strongest growth.
Despite the fact that the NES Classic leads in the number of units, the PS4 still tops the ranking by revenue. Sales of Xbox One in dollar terms almost doubled in a year, and Nintendo Switch — grew by more than 50 %. Revenues from the supply of portable game systems is also increased, but by only 7 %.
As already mentioned, sales of games software in June decreased by 1% compared to the same period last year to $374 million And for the first half of the costs, however, rose 6 % to $2.6 billion Switch Nintendo was the only platform in which observed sales growth of the games, which more than doubled in dollar terms compared to June last year. As a result, in June, Nintendo was the most successful publisher.
Analyst Matt Piscatella (Mat Piscatella) noted that in the current year demonstrate various reprints of popular games (including the editions Game of the Year, remaster, complete collection, etc.). The growth of this sector has been increased in 150% compared to the same period last year. Also the reissues are pushing the sales of new games.
First place in sales in the US took a tennis arcade game Mario Tennis Aces for Nintendo Switch. By the way, this game has the record for the number of copies sold in the history of the Mario Tennis series, including a version for the Nintendo 64. In General, the list of the most popular games of June 2018 as follows (taking into account both physical and digital copies):
During the meeting in June, game show in 2018 E3, Microsoft mentioned that is working on a next generation game console over the gaming streaming service. About the same time respected blogger Paul Thurrot (Paul Thurrott), covering the activities of Microsoft, announced that the new console means a family of devices with a common code name Scarlett, which is scheduled for release in 2020. Now he decided to tell some details.
First of all, he confirmed that Microsoft has two gaming system Xbox Next. The first is a traditional and familiar console. It is designed for those players who prefer to have all game equipment to yourself, and not rely on the cloud. As regards the technical characteristics of this system, Mr. Turret won’t be able to tell.
But the second device is designed to work with streaming gaming service, is somewhat more interesting. As reported by one of the informants, the service is code name Scarlett Cloud and developed since 2013, when Microsoft first demonstrated at the conference for their employees, the cloud-based games. But this time Microsoft has solid plans to bring the technology to market.
So, the second Xbox Next will be different with reduced energy consumption and obviously the cost. An important feature of this solution is Microsoft technology designed to reduce ” lag ” problems that inevitably arise in the performance of the game on a remote server. Cloud console will produce locally a very limited amount of computation, but it will be critically important tasks such as data input from the controller, image processing and, most important, collision detection.
Part of the game, which will be executed locally, some informants referred to as a layer (slice), and others — bonding (splice). Microsoft’s approach means that the game is executed locally at the same time (critical delay data) and cloud (the most demanding graphics and other calculations), then the result is combined and displayed on the TV screen in the living room of the user.
The disadvantage of this approach is the increased hardware requirements on the local client system that will increase the cost of streaming unit. However, such a system would still be much cheaper than people used to pay for the game console of new generation. In the result, Microsoft hopes to rapidly increase the installation base.
This is very important because Microsoft usually earns little on the sales of the actual hardware and receives profits through services like Xbox Live, Xbox Gamepass and game sales. If the company will be able to create next generation game console, which will differ a minimum price, but to compensate for this increased cost of subscription, it will be a big win for Xbox and Microsoft. It is worth remembering that all games will run in the cloud and to access them, you may have to subscribe or otherwise pay for the servers and the developers ‘ work.
Data centers Microsoft has in each major market, so the company can quickly deploy the system worldwide, where there is sufficiently fast Internet connection, and delays in transferring the information from the client to the local Azure servers will be relatively low. Floor Turret notes that the software giant strives to Scarlett Cloud technology could potentially work on any type of device, not only on the Xbox Next — this will allow the company to significantly expand market coverage.
As for games, it is argued, all projects developed under the Xbox Next will be available on both gaming systems of the family Scarlett. In other words, there will be games that can only be run on a full, not a cloud system. New gaming system is scheduled to launch in 2020 — will see if Microsoft do finally, cloud game a worthy alternative to the usual locally fully executable projects.
Microsoft in the face of the head of the gaming division Phil Spencer (Phil Spencer) said bluntly during E3 2018, which is working on the next-gen Xbox (let’s call the console for simplicity, the Xbox Next). When we can expect the release of this gaming platform on the market? This was recently told by a reputable blogger Paul Thurrot (Paul Thurrott), citing its sources.
According to him, the next-generation Xbox is code name Scarlett, and Microsoft plans to release it in 2020. While Microsoft describes Scarlett in internal documents as a collection of devices, so can get several products. The date may seem relatively close, because Xbox One X was released only last year, but Microsoft supposedly set up firmly and going to shake the industry.
Mr. Thurrot suggests that the Next Xbox will be fully compatible with all games available today, but it will offer opportunities and services next generation (like streaming games). Considering how much Microsoft spends on backward compatibility today, it is a logical assumption. In addition, surely the Xbox Next will be still based on the x86 architecture.
Sony, in turn, says nothing about their game system next generation (let’s call it the PlayStation 5), but rumors of its development appeared long ago, so the launch of the device should also be in the offing. Last message touch used by the Japanese core components and continue a fruitful cooperation with AMD.
Resource Forbes, citing anonymous industry sources, said that the PS5 will use the graphics accelerator architecture of AMD Navi, supplemented by the CPU on the basis of Zen+ (strangely, not Zen 2). However, more detailed information is not available, so it is not clear whether it is still on a powerful single chip system by analogy with the PS4 and PS4 Pro (it saves), or Sony decided to use the individual components CPU and GPU Ryzen Navi for maximum performance.
Graphics architecture AMD Navi will be made subject to the 7-nm technological standards, and, according to sources, this accelerator is the result of close collaboration with AMD to Sony. Most of the work on a new architecture was allegedly conducted under the leadership of Raja Koduri (Raja Koduri), who led Radeon Technologies Group and recently left AMD to work for Intel.
It is argued that the collaboration with Sony was carried out at the expense of work on Radeon RX Vega and other current projects AMD: Mr. Koduri was forced against his will to transfer up to 2/3 of the engineering team exclusively for the Navi. Because of this, supposedly the Manager was very unhappy with the amount of resources and engineering hours spent on Board accelerators RX Vega, and products like Frontier Edition turned out worse than expected.
Citing sources, Forbes also reports that the version of the Navi for desktops will be primarily focused on the mass market and will not compete with the expensive and high-class accelerators NVIDIA GeForce. This is logical, given the console roots of the Navi, but it does not mean that after the mass products will come and more powerful solutions on the same architecture.
It is curious that, according to Forbes, the accelerator Navi did not mention in connection with Microsoft Scarlett. Journalists suggest that Xbox Next will not use a Navi or a accelerator created by AMD and Microsoft on the basis of the Vega. In General, all the informants talk about Navi was carried out in the past tense, as if the work on the accelerator has been completed — maybe PS5 will come out before the Xbox Next, by analogy with the PS4 and Xbox One Pro X?