Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Zeebo

Here's an interesting announcement from GDC - another games console.

The Zeebo - lighter than an Xbox360 power supply!

Called the Zeebo, this new console is the brainchild of Mike Yuen of Qualcomm and Reinaldo Normand of Tectoy. The twist is it's designed for the developing world and as such is very inexpensive (relative to existing consoles). It's also completely wireless - so no cartridges or CD/DVD's are required - everything is downloaded to the box.

Here's a blurb from their website:
Zeebo hardware is based on Qualcomm’s BREW platform and MSM chipset, leveraging high-volume cellphone economics to create the world’s most affordable console. In addition, Zeebo users can buy the top game titles, localized in their language, for a fraction of the traditional retail price. And the Zeebo Console consumes only 1 watt of power--20 to 100 times less than other consoles--saving substantial energy costs (and enabling users to buy 2-3 more titles per year).
Hmmm, not sure how saving money on electricity translates into 2 or 3 more games per year. Either the games are almost nothing to buy or electricity in developing countries is expensive!

Titles include Tekken 2, Sonic Adventure, Crash Bandicoot as well as 5 embedded games including Fifa '09, Brain Challenge, Prey, Quake and Need for Speed.

It will be interesting to see how it fares. With the Wii changing the game and now iPhone turning everything upside down I wouldn't rule out the Zeebo from doing some interesting things.


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