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According to analsyst cosoles will die out between 5 to 10 year time.

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MikeB said:
HappySqurriel said:

I think there is an element of truth to this that some people probably do not like to admit ...

Up until the release of the Nintendo DS and Wii the primary motivating factor for people to "upgrade" from one console generation to the next console generation has been the processing power of the new systems; we see a lot of this continue today with people like MikeB talking about how the Cell processor is 20 times as powerful as a 4 year old G4 processor when performing the fast fourier transform without any consideration of what that means or why that would be important.

This focus on technology can not survive for much longer being that within 5 years for the same (inflation adjusted) price of a PSP or XBox 360 you will be able to buy a laptop that is able to provide 3D graphics at a similar quality to what a cutting-edge console will be able to provide.

The PS3 specs are impressive, which is important because this allows for a longer lifespan combined with high definition graphics. Consumers are now buying HDTVs en masse, so this specs upgrade makes perfectly sense for the long run and makes a big difference in user experience.

IMO the console focuss should be on comfort and seamless user experience. I have been a long time PC gamer, but for me it's time for change in this regard. The PC gaming and multimedia experience has many shortcomings and the benefits with regard to gaming and multimedia with the PS3 generation and HDTVs have become far fewer.


The point wasn't whether the PS3's specs are impressive or not, it was that the focus on technical specifications is a dead end for the market. People may argue that a $500 laptop can not run Crysis, but that is really not important; these systems can run games like Half Life 2, and the difference between Crysis and Half Life 2 to the typical consumer is fairly small (and will be even smaller for similar games in 5 years).

I don't disagree that the seemless user experience will be very important to the survival of game consoles; in general the fact that they're dedicated machines is what will make them survive, anything that takes away from their dedicated focus is probably a move in the wrong direction.



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he's stupid



HappySqurriel said:

I think there is an element of truth to this that some people probably do not like to admit ...

Up until the release of the Nintendo DS and Wii the primary motivating factor for people to "upgrade" from one console generation to the next console generation has been the processing power of the new systems; we see a lot of this continue today with people like MikeB talking about how the Cell processor is 20 times as powerful as a 4 year old G4 processor when performing the fast fourier transform without any consideration of what that means or why that would be important.

This focus on technology can not survive for much longer being that within 5 years for the same (inflation adjusted) price of a PSP or XBox 360 you will be able to buy a laptop that is able to provide 3D graphics at a similar quality to what a cutting-edge console will be able to provide.

Why consoles and portable gaming systems will survive is that their hardware is dedicated to gaming which means that their user-interfaces can be perfectly suited to providing a better gameplay experience than any lap-top can provide.

The problem is, there are major economic incentives against what he is saying.

1) Convergence, or, one device to rule them all.  History has shown time and time again that for consumer electronics, we do not want one device that does everything.  Sure, some people will and thus there will always be a niche for those devices, but they have never been something the populace wants.  We already have the be-all end-all of convergence; the limit of convergence technology is the computer.

 And if we've learned anything about computers (or other general-purpose devices) it is that you cannot control distribution with them.  The more your device is billed to do everything, the more people will want to get around the limits you impose on them.  Take the PSP - a device billed to do everything, and people don't buy games.  Or UMD.  Or pretty much any part of the ecosystem Sony set up.  Thats because when you are selling a device that is billed as being able to do anything, and then you artificially stop people from doing things, you destroy consumer confidence and lead them to alternative paths.  Then when you take a just-as-easily cracked device like the DS, which is only billed as a gaming machine, you still get the piracy -- but you also sell software and cases and pretty much every part of the ecosystem.

This pattern can be seen time and time again in consumer electronics.  Jailbreaking iPhones and iPods is a booming business in and of itself - while people happily shell out $3 for ringtones on lesser phones.  It's human nature; the more you *think* you can do, the more you *want* to do -- despite whether or not others want you to do it.

And these are just economic incentives against convergence.  This doesn't even get into more features necessitating more size (which consumers don't like) or increasing cost (which consumers don't like) or consumers asking why their movie player also plays games when they don't have any desire to game.

Don't get me wrong - there is now and always will be a market for convergence devices.  That market is NOT the mass market.  This has been shown to us time and time again.

2) The 'Dumb Terminal' argument (which the author mistakingly calls 'cloud computing,' which is slightly different).  This is the argument that all you really need is a net connection, and everything else can be streamed to you over a network.  This came up all the time right after the days of the mainframe computer, where people would connect to a mainframe computer via a terminal which was basically a monitor and a keyboard.  As microcomputers got big, it was constantly assumed that computing would eventually return to the mainframe model, as it is easier to support one complex computer (or cluster, or whatever).  So you could have all your data on the central model, and pull it up on demand, and your personal computer would be cheap because it would basically be a connection to this other computer.

Once again, history has shown us that this is not acceptable to the masses. EVERYBODY does something on computers that they would not want to put in control of a third party, even if it would probably be safer -- whether thats illegitimate file sharing, or just emailing personal information to a family member.  It may be safer in the hands of someone devoted to keeping it safe, but that doesn't remove the psychological reaction to giving your sensitive data to someone you don't know.

This gets even worse when it comes to media.  We are so used to owning our media, and doing whatever we want with it.  In a digital world, this means ripping it to our hard drive, putting it on our iPods, putting it on Youtube, watching it on our computers, or whatever.  Rental systems are one thing, but when we think about what we 'own', we want to 'have' it.  We don't want it streamed to us over the internet, or have anyone tell us when, how, or why we can use it.  People do not want devices that try to limit this, and you can be damn sure that a centralized solution like that would not let me use DeCSS or AnyDVD to rip my DVDs (all legally purchased, thank you very much) or Blu-Rays (still not rip-able enough for me to buy, but eventually...). 

 This point meshes with #1... if I am buying computing, I want to compute regardless of what it is... but you can be damn sure a content distributor is not going to allow me to get content from other channels if it is up to them.

 Sorry for the length, I expect many "TL/DR" to follow this... but don't think that this guy's argument holds any weight.  We've been hearing it for decades, and its no truer now than it was then.



Please, PLEASE do NOT feed the trolls.
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--Predictions--
1) WiiFit will outsell the pokemans.
  Current Status: 2009.01.10 70k till PKMN Yellow (Passed: Emerald, Crystal, FR/LG)

^^I can think of a least 10 times in the last year that everyone says the Internet will supercede personal computers. Its bullshit. Why would you want to rely on other for your computing power (and pay a monthly fee to them to do it) when you can just pay a one-time price and do all the computing more efficiently on your own PC? Sheesh, do these guys REALLY have that short of a memory they can't remember the mainframe crash in the late '80's?



Not trying to be a fanboy. Of course, it's hard when you own the best console eve... dang it

@alpha_dk: Actually, in the special case of gaming, the arguments against dumb terminals are even stronger than you portrayed them. Technical limitations abound when you try to stream something as interactive as a game.

No matter whether people want to or not, the speed of light will not increase to accomodate a model where your game is being run in a computer which is thousands of kilometers away, while maintaining the desired property of fast response time. It can work for poker and chess games, but anything as interactive as most of the games which are played on consoles just can't work well on such a model.

 



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NJ5 said:

@alpha_dk: Actually, in the special case of gaming, the arguments against dumb terminals are even stronger than you portrayed them. Technical limitations abound when you try to stream something as interactive as a game.

No matter whether people want to or not, the speed of light will not increase to accomodate a model where your game is being run in a computer which is thousands of kilometers away, while maintaining the desired property of fast response time. It can work for poker and chess games, but anything as interactive as most of the games which are played on consoles just can't work well on such a model.

 


 I agree, I just didn't want to make my post any longer than it already was, and was trying to keep it as non-specific to gaming as I could because the article was about convergence devices.  Thank you for bringing it up, though



Please, PLEASE do NOT feed the trolls.
fksumot tag: "Sheik had to become a man to be useful. Or less useful. Might depend if you're bi."

--Predictions--
1) WiiFit will outsell the pokemans.
  Current Status: 2009.01.10 70k till PKMN Yellow (Passed: Emerald, Crystal, FR/LG)

There’s hardly any technology difference between some hard disc video recorders and an Xbox 360 for example.

Nobody noticed this little gem? I guess if your measure of comparison is that "they both have a harddrive" he's totally right.

Maybe he's thinking that little DVD-menu-style soccer game I can play with my satellite receiver remote is the future of gaming?



Aj_habfan said:
Oh my god, that is brilliant! If only any person in the world could make such precise predictions.

 I'm thinking of a person who's first name starts with an M and last name starts with a P. Any guesses?



this was on engadget jsut a bit ago, so i'll just repost my comment from there:

No need to worry about it. Consoles will never disappear entirely, because no matter how good computers get, they offer too much variance in design and capabilities to be able to design a game that takes advantage of the computer you're using fully.
In order to have a complete experience of a video game, it has to be designed for a console with a specific set of standards in both spec and controls. When I buy a video game, I know that it will be compatible with the console I bought it for, and I know it will play the same way that everybody else's game plays.



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My Prediction: Wii will be achieve 48% market share by the end of 2008, and will achieve 50% by the end of june of 09. Prediction Failed.

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Borkachev said:
There’s hardly any technology difference between some hard disc video recorders and an Xbox 360 for example.

Nobody noticed this little gem? I guess if your measure of comparison is that "they both have a harddrive" he's totally right.

Maybe he's thinking that little DVD-menu-style soccer game I can play with my satellite receiver remote is the future of gaming?

Priceless, well spotted...

 



My Mario Kart Wii friend code: 2707-1866-0957