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October 13, 2015


Microsoft Courted Conan to Plug His Show Into XBox Live

by Danny Gallagher, posted Apr 14th 2010 9:03AM
Conan O'Brien in front of the Mario Bros. backdrop
Conan O'Brien's deal with TBS
may have thrown every TV pundit and pontificator for a loop, but here's one that will make your head spin clear around your neck. (WARNING: TV Squad and its parent companies will not be held responsible for any head and/or neck trauma that may occur while reading this article).

While everyone thought Conan would simply jump to Fox because it was the last remaining network without a strong late night slot, Coco and company were being courted by all sorts of networks and media outlets, including ... Microsoft???

That's right, the technology giant had been talking to Conan about a deal that would have brought his nightly talk show to their XBox Live service.

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Sony PlayStation Joins Reality TV Game

by Aimee Deeken, posted Feb 12th 2010 1:00PM
PlayStation 3The video game industry wants to try its hand at playing something else: reality TV programming.

Sony Computer Entertainment America has partnered with producer 51 Minds to launch a reality TV series, Variety reports. The program, titled 'The Tester,' will be available only to PlayStation 3 owners, running exclusively on the PlayStation Network.

This is the industry's first foray into original programming modeled on the broadcast network format. PS3 has previously offered an original anime series, coverage of upcoming games and a behind-the-scenes look at the video game industry.

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Some guy makes working Star Trek Phaser

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jan 20th 2010 11:00AM
Don't worry. It's not some lone nut with too much time on his hands and the entire Star Trek DVD collection to keep him company in his Northern Montana wilderness cabin.

He's taken a blu-ray laser from a Playstation 3 console and inserted it into a classic toy phaser. Apparently, it's only produces enough juice to burst balloons and isn't powerful enough to burn holes in walls. So what's the point of building one? Call me when you've figured out how to make a phaser that could make Scarface's "little friend" look and sound like a pea shooter.

[via Buzzfeed]

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PVR add-on for PS3 to begin European rollout in September

by Brad Linder, posted Jul 18th 2008 7:04PM
PlayTVIf you were hoping to get your hands on a Sony PlayTV add-on for the Playstation3 this summer, it looks like you might have to wait just a bit longer. Sony's Davide Reeves says the accessory will be available in the UK on September 10th and will roll out to other European markets by December.

The PlayTV is a €99 box that you can add to Sony's video game console to turn it into a personal video recorder. Users can watch live high definition, digital broadcasts or record programs to a PS3 hard drive for later viewing.

Thanks to a recent software update, PlayTV owners will be able to record a TV program while using their PS3 to play video games.

There's no word on a US launch date. Since the US uses different broadcast standards than Europe, you won't be able to use a European PlayTV in America. But gamers in New Zealand and Australia should be able to pick up a PlayTV early next year.

[via EngadgetHD]

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Sony PlayTV for the PS3 to launch in the UK this summer?

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 21st 2008 9:58AM
PlayTVEngadget is reporting that Sony plans to launch the PlayTV television tuner add-on for its Playstation3 gaming console on July 31st. But if you follow the link to the Amazon product page for the PlayTV, you'll find that the release date is listed as October 31st.

Either way, it seems pretty clear that UK PS3 users are going to be able to get their hands on the PlayTV before US customers. The devices is designed to work with the UK's digital television system and will not work with US cable, satellite, or over the air television yet. I'm pretty sure we'll see a US launch eventually, but not until afte the UK version is released.

Engadget says the PlayTV will set you back £59.99 or about $120 US whenever it becomes available in the UK.

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TV and movie downloads coming to the PS3?

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 16th 2008 3:06PM
Sony Playstation3Sony has always claimed that the PlayStation3 is more than a video game console. It's a multimedia center. While the PlayStation2 helped spur the adoption of DVDs, the PlayStation3 sports a Blu-ray drive for viewing high definition videos.

You can also connect a PS3 to the internet to download media. But while you can get games online, the PlayStation store isn't currently focused on media like TV and movies. But that could soon change. Sony VP Peter Dille writes on the PlayStation Blog that the company will be "offering a video service for the PS3" that's different from any other service out there. Enigmatic? Yes. Still good news? Seems like.

It's not clear at this point if Dille is talking about streaming video or a download service. Would it be free, ad-supported, pay-per download or subscription?

I'm not placing too much stock in the whole unlike "others you've seen or used" bit. That just sounds like promotional hype to me. But this is the first time I'm aware of that we've gotten word from near the top indicating that Sony is planning a video download service.

[via CNet]

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BBC explains why iPlayer is headed to the Wii, not Xbox 360 or PS3

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 11th 2008 2:59PM
As reported earlier this week, the BBC plans to develop a Nintendo Wii version of its iPlayer online TV viewing software. The announcement left me scratching my head a bit. After all, aren't Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Sony's Playstation3 more obvious choices? Both video game consoles are already designed to be multimedia devices, with optical disc drives and access to online media.

Now the BBC is explaining why it decided to go with the Nintendo Wii. The Wii supports branded channels. In other words, if the BBC wanted to make video content available on the other platforms, the software interface would have to look pretty much like all the other Xbox 360 or PS3 channels. Nintendo, on the other hand, is offering the BBC a dedicated channel which will mimic the iPlayer interface already available through a web browser.

[via Joystiq]

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More details on Sony's PlayTV PVR add-on for the PS3 - VIDEO

by Brad Linder, posted Jan 19th 2008 10:57AM

Sony has released a trailer explaining how the upcoming PlayTV will help turn your Playstation3 into a personal video recorder. My favorite part of the video is probably the part where a friendly voice tells you there are 4 easy steps for installing the PlayTV. Step four is to follow the on-screen instructions, which probably means there's really quite a few more steps to follow.

Anyway, you get a few peeks at the PlayTV interface, and it looks like it's got a pretty decent electronic program guide and program preview menu. If you have a PSP, you can also use the Remote Play feature which looks pretty awesome. Remote Play lets you watch live or recorded shows on your PSP over an internet connection from any WiFI hotspot. When we first heard about the PlayTV, it sounded like you'd be able to transfer recorded programs to your Playstation Portable, but this is a way cooler feature.

Unfortunately for those of us in the US, the PlayTV is designed for PAL, not NTSC right now. As such, it will be available first in the UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain. A US version could still be in the works, but there's no word on when it would be available.

[via TG Daily]

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Sony drops VAIO VGX-XL3 media center

by Brad Linder, posted Oct 1st 2007 3:00PM
Sony VAIO XL3Sony appears to be killing is VAIO VGX-XL3 media center after less than half a year on the market. First announced in January, the XL3 has only been available since April.

There's no word on why Sony is pulling the product, but we're guessing it probably has something to do with low sales. Still, the XL3 was the only Sony media center PC that packed integrated CableCard support.

We doubt Sony is pulling out of the home theater PC market altogether, but it is possible we could see the company focus its efforts more heavily on the PS3 than standalone PC boxes. While the Playstation3 bears a high price tag for a video game console, it's significantly cheaper than the $3300 XL3, and you might already have one in the living room. Sony plans to launch a TV tuner attachment for the PS3 soon, and it might be reasonable to expect a CableCard add-on at some point down the road, which could turn the PS3 into a full-fledged HD PVR with built-in Blu-Ray support.

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Sony announces PVR add-on for PS3

by Brad Linder, posted Aug 22nd 2007 4:32PM
PS3 PVRWe knew this was coming, but we didn't expect it so soon. Today Sony announced the PlayTV, a combination dual digital TV tuner and personal video recorder for the Playstation3. The two tuners are HDTV ready, and can handle video up to 1080p.

The PlayTV will be available in the UK, France, Italy, Germany, and Spain early next year. The digital TV tuner uses the DVB-T format and is built for European use. There's no word whether an ATSC or NTSC version will be released in the US anytime soon.

The PlayTV will let users watch live TV or record programs for watching or transferring to a Playstation Portable. It's not clear whether there will be DRM restrictions that prevent you from transferring recordings to a PC or other portable device.

[via Joystiq]

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Sony could turn your PS3 into a PVR next year

by Brad Linder, posted Jul 31st 2007 10:35PM
Sony PlayStation3Warwick Light, the marketing boss at Sony's New Zealand division tells The Press that the PlayStation3 that the company hopes to release a digital television tuner for the gaming console next year.

That would essentially let you turn your PS3 into a digital video recorder. The system already has the key components including a hard drive, graphics processor, Blu-Ray/DVD support, and networking capabilities.

The key word in Light's comments is "hopes." As in "hopes to release." That's not quite as firm as "plans." So we won't know for certain whether Sony will release a digital tuner and PVR software in New Zealand for a while. And we also don't know if there are any plans to launch a similar device/service in the US. But aside from the fact that a PS3 has a relatively small hard drive for recording HDTV, there's no reason the equipment couldn't handle standard or high definition television capabilities with a USB tuner.

[via Kotaku]

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TV Squad Daily with Brigitte - VIDEO

by Brigitte Dale, posted Apr 20th 2007 7:15PM
Hey, Brigitte here with TV Squad Daily. I'll be covering the TV stories I find interesting each day, Monday through Friday, in this video blog.

Today on TV Squad Daily:
  • Sanjaya isn't gone... he's free! (to be a triple threat?)
  • India isn't sad to see Sanjaya voted off American Idol.
  • Extreme Makeover: Home Edition isn't just about improving homes anymore. This week's episode involves someone getting their own playable character in a new PS3 game.
The video's embedded below, or you can download the file directly (Quicktime required). You can also subscribe to this podcast via our feed.

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