Netflix is confident that it will have ample supply in November for every PS3 user who requests a disc for its recently announced streaming service. Speaking with Joystiq, Netflix Vice President of Corporate Communications Steve Swasey wouldn’t disclose the number of reservations the company has received for the free PS3 Netflix disc since the company announced the program on Monday, but did emphasize, “We’re confident we’ve produced enough discs.” Distribution centers apparently already have the units.
Swasey told us that the company is still hammering out the distribution details, but the plan is to send out a press release sometime in November announcing that the discs have shipped. Customers should receive the red envelope in about the same time it usually takes for a Netflix shipment to reach them. He expressed that “there’s no VIP list or special circumstance list,” so everyone should be receiving it around the same time.
Asked if there were any points he’d like to clarify about the recent announcement, Swasey told us that the disc was the best solution currently available in getting PS3 users the Netflix service, downplaying the need to always have disc in the tray. “They put the disc in whenever they play a game.” When pushed on why an integrated solution wasn’t implemented, he said, “We haven’t given any reason. The key thing here … it’s very easy and no different than playing a video game. We’ll have an update in time.” The integrated solution is expected in late 2010.
Netflix doesn’t like to discuss HD content in nitty gritty detail yet, but confirmed that the PS3 will have a similar offering to the Xbox 360, which outputs 720p and stereo sound.
Keep an eye out for an announcement in November for when the discs ship, then put that eye back in when the disc arrives. You’ll need both to appreciate those episodes of Dexter.
The PS3 Slim has been at the eye of a massive rumor storm for months, but now that Sony has finally made it official it’s time to bring the facts. By now you probably know the general specs – it includes a 120GB HDD, it’s $300/€300, it’s out September 1st, and it’s, well, slimmer – but no self-respecting, hardware-obsessing, early-adopting gamer would stop there. Read on to snag twelve of the PS3 Slim’s most overlooked details and you’ll know more than the next guy when it’s released next month.
1. It’s not actually called the “PS3 Slim” – it’s just the PS3 or the PlayStation 3. It is a new PS3 for sure, but nowhere on the box or in the documentation will you see the words “PS3” and “Slim” next to each other. Nevertheless, we’ll keep calling it the “PS3 Slim” for the sake of convenience.
2. The logo is beautifully etched into the machine (above), and not only that, the old branding is gone for good – no more tacky Spider-Man font! No more PLAYSTATION 3, either – Sony decided to stop yelling at us with every press release and just call it the “PlayStation 3.” Much better.
3. It has buttons! Those weird, touch-sensitive non-buttons are gone, and they’ve been replaced with that wonderful, tactile CLICK that only real buttons can deliver.
4. This is what the new ad campaign looks like:
5. It’s smaller, but not in every way. It’s thinner and lighter, but as you can see in the comparison below, it’s a bit longer from the rear to the front. They had to fit all those graphics in there somehow.
6. It’s quieter! With power consumption two-thirds what it was, there’s a lot less fan-blowing and a lot more sweet serenity.
7. It only comes with composite cables. Yes, composite. Not even component, and definitely no HDMI.
8. If you have a Bravia TV and you hook up your new PS3 with an HDMI cable (…not included), you can operate the PS3’s media bar with your TV’s remote – you can even set it to turn the system off when you turn the TV off.
9. The hard drive IS removable – though it doesn’t initially appear to be. There’s a little hole by the drive bay which contains a screw that holds the HDD in place. Pop that open, unscrew it, and you’re in business.
10. It’s not backwards compatible with the PS2, but it might work with some PSX games. That’s right, the PS3 Slim cannot play PlayStation 2 games, but some PlayStation games will work. The only appropriate response to this statement is “lol wut?”
11. It has a tiny stand-by light. Look how cute it is:
12. The games advertised on the back of the box are: inFAMOUS, Madden NFL 10, Tekken 6, MAG, and Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. Does that tell us anything? Not really, but it is something you probably didn’t know.
C-c-c-combo breaker: Bonus facts!
We couldn’t possibly stop at just twelve things when there’s so much to say. What, you thought we could only make numbered lists of things? Well numbers can suck it – here are a few more things we noticed about Sony’s new product.
If you want to stand it vertically, you can buy a stand separately.
The big power switch on the back is gone – but that’s about the only thing different about the layout of the system’s rear.
A rumor posted over at Destructoid points to a new Clone Wars game in the works for Xbox 360 and PS3. Titled Star Wars The Clone Wars: Republic Heroes, the game is described as a third-person action title featuring two-player co-op, with separate “Jedi” and “Clone” storylines featuring Anakin Skywalker and Jedi Padawan Ahsoka Tano, respectively.
The game’s focus is supposedly on melee combat, with mention of some form of upgrades available throughout the game. Jedi characters will purportedly have some access to Force powers (gasp!), such as the ability to control droids (Dtoid’s post mentions rolling Droideka).
Krome Studios has had plenty of experience with the Star Wars franchise. The company handled porting Star Wars: The Force Unleashed to the Wii, PS2, and PSP, and was responsible for the Wii-exclusive Star Wars The Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels. Let’s hope the third time’s the charm here.
As much as the developers of BioShock 2 at 2K Marin were eager to show us their game in action, they were (quite pleasantly) even more eager to talk about it. Following the conclusion of our demo walkthrough, lead designer Zak McClendon, lead environment artist Hogarth De La Plante and lead level designer JP LeBreton opened the floor to questions from the half-dozen game journos in attendance.
Read on after the break for the team’s take on revisiting the first game’s mysteries, the intricacies of plasmid mixing, the return of Vita-Chambers and more.
That “Dead Rising 2” video from last week, that kinda looked like it could have been Dead Rising 2? It was totally Dead Rising 2. Capcom has officially announced the title not just for Xbox 360, but for PS3 and PC as well! The sequel occurs years after the events of the first game — with the zombie virus now spread throughout the United States. The action will take place in the “gambling paradise of Fortune City”. The main character is apparently no longer Frank West, but some guy in a jacket instead.
As rumored, the game is being developed by Canada’s Blue Castle Games. According to the press release, “A number of members from the original Dead Rising team will be working alongside Blue Castle Games throughout the development process,” including producer Keiji Inafune.
Gallery: Dead Rising 2
Stopping cancer, simulating black hole collisions, and now … breaking internet security? Is there anything the PS3 can’t do? Researchers have been using the PS3 in interng ways. Most recently, a team of researchers from the U.S., Switzerland and the Netherlands have found a way of bypassing the security of digital certificates provided by companies like Verisign. These digital certificates help transmit your credit card information on the internet in a secure manner.
By using 200 PS3 systems linked together, researchers were able to do the math that helped them decrypt the MD5 hash that’s used by Verisign. The researchers would be able to mimic online retail sites, potentially stealing tons of valuable information from consumers. It appears researchers want the hash to be replaced by a more potent one.
It’s unrealistic to expect hackers will be able to replicate the results of these researchers any time soon. Getting 200 PS3s linked to each other can be quite a pricey feat! Of course, when you’re stealing all of the internet’s credit card info, you might be able to afford buying a few hundred PS3s.
According to a study by the National Resources Defense Council, Americans use up about $1 billion worth of energy per year powering video game consoles, enough to power the entire city of San Diego.
It’s a pretty staggering figure, but I’m willing to bet that figures on the power consumption of things like refrigerators and washing machines are even worse. Any serious appliance is going to suck up a lot of juice, but that doesn’t mean we should throw them all out.
However, those folks who leave their consoles on all the time aren’t doing their energy bills any favors. With the Xbox 360 consuming 119 watts in active mode and the PS3 consuming 150 watts, turning these systems off when you aren’t playing is kind of an obvious move. But apparently a lot of people just leave them on all the time, leading to one very basic question: why? Both systems have features that’ll shut down automatically after a certain amount of idle time, seems like a no brainer to turn that on if you’re too damned lazy to turn them off yourself when done playing.
Yesterday we relayed the news that Sony’s Playstation 3 sales for the holiday period were lower than expected, yet Sony was remaining optimistic. Apparently, some good news on the production front sheds some light on how the company can manage to keep its chin up amidst some pretty terrible sales performance. iSuppli has broken down the production cost of Sony’s latest PlayStation 3 and Sony has reportedly shaved 35% off the cost of the original PS3 unit. Through changes to various components and integration, Sony has cut the price of manufacturing the PS3 console from $690.23 to $448.73. By integrating components into the core silicon of the PS3, Sony has also reduced the number of parts used from 4,048 in the previous-generation 60GB model to a modest 2,820 in the current model. With further changes and improvements, iSuppli estimates that Sony could soon be breaking even – perhaps just in time for that much anticipated price cut we’ve all been waiting for.
PlayStation 3 and PSP play nice together, so we’ve always been a bit baffled as to why Microsoft hasn’t created similar synergy between the Xbox 360 and its iPod-chaser, Zune. Now it looks like MS is taking steps to formally introduce the devices to one another – at least that’s what one of its job postings suggests.
According to CNET, Microsoft is looking to add a user experience designer to its Zune group, with a focus on the Zune user interface, Zune PC application – used to access the Zune Marketplace – and … the Zune Xbox application? It could be that the company is working on a means to (finally) download, manage and transfer Zune Marketplace content on 360 to Zune (and vice-versa). MS has said that the New Xbox Experience will make it easier to roll out extension services (see Netflix and Photo Sharing) without the need for major system updates.