Movies and Weather Without Leaving Your SeatIt was Sony's corporate strategy briefing in Tokyo yesterday, which of course had to include some info on upcoming features for the PS3. The high price of development in bringing the PS3 to market should be covered and profitable by March 2009 - which is pretty good going.
Online movies for renting and purchase is something which has been rumoured for a while and is an inevitable step for the PS3 to take considering its multimedia strengths. Well, the service is going to be up and running in the US shortly and in Europe and Japan by the end of 2008. It should allow movies to be streamed or downloaded for playing on the PS3 and PSP, with both SD and HD movies available. Prices at the moment are looking like $5.99 for renting a HD movie and $12.99 for buying an SD movie (although this was just a demo so its not official). More concrete details will be released at E3 next month in LA. Some people have commented that Sony are a little late in coming to 'movie download' market with both Apple and Microsoft already up and running. This is true but then Sony own so many movie and TV studios that they should be able to blow away the competition with a huge choice of content - hopefully.
A new network service called 'Life with PlayStation' is being launched to further expand the PS3's non-gaming functionality. It will include the delivery of information useful for day to day life. The first part of this shown is a very interesting weather and news reporting system based on an awesome looking virtual 3D globe (which looks a lot like the gorgeous 'Gaia' visualization introduces with firmware 2.10). By rotating the world you can get realtime news stories and weather reports from various locations. Other information, links, geo-tagged photos and services will be included as time goes on - all while you listen to your favourite tunes. It looks a great way to start the day.