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Will Consoles Merge Back Into PCs? 356

Posted by Soulskill
from the it's-a-definite-possibility dept.
GamePolitics is running an interview with Randy Stude, president of the PC Gaming Alliance, discussing the future of gaming on the PC and the console. Stude has some interesting thoughts regarding the long-term viability of stand-alone consoles: "The guts of every console should tell you that the capability is there for the PC to act as the central point for all the consoles. If you bought a PC and as part of that equation you said, Okay, when you're on the phone with Dell, 'Hey, Dell, on this PC, this new notebook I'm buying, can you make sure it has the PlayStation 4 option built into it?' Well, why not? Why shouldn't that be the case? [Sony is] certainly not making any money on the hardware. I mean, can't they create a stable enough environment to specify that if Dell's going to sell that notebook and say that it's PlayStation 4 [compatible] that it must have certain ingredients and it must meet certain criteria? Absolutely they could [do] that. Are they going to do it? I don't know. I predict that they will. I predict that all of the console makers over time will recognize that it's too expensive to develop the proprietary solution and recognize the value of collapsing back on the PC as a ubiquitous platform."
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Will Consoles Merge Back Into PCs?

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  • No.... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jawtheshark (198669) * <slashdot@nospam.jawtheshark.com> on Friday December 12, 2008 @06:40AM (#26088423) Homepage Journal

    Never gonna happen.... I simply can't see that ever happening. It would at least partially mean that companies like Sony or Nintendo need to build components and allow interoperability with what is essentially an open platform. It means releasing control, they won't do that.

    Besides, consoles are mostly played at the TV and installed in a fixed way like a DVD Player. It is simply convenient. Connecting a laptop to your TV? Cumbersome!

    I personally think that PC gaming is on the way out except for a few niches. My brother bought GTA4, and we simply can't get to run it on his 2 year old PC. He now faces the choice: pay about 1500€ for a new rig in order to play GTA4 at acceptable rates. Or spend +/-450€ on a PS3 and buy the game again....

    I recommended him to get the PS3.... Throw in a USB mouse and a USB keyboard and he can play like he is used to.

    • Re:No.... (Score:4, Informative)

      by TheThiefMaster (992038) on Friday December 12, 2008 @06:50AM (#26088479)

      GTA4 is known to have a terrible PC port. Most recent games would run just fine on a couple-of-year-old pc.
      A surprising number of games even run on my parents' TIME (who've now gone bust) pc from 2003, and that has integrated graphics (admittedly it's an integrated geforce 4, not a via or sis crap).

      • by d3ac0n (715594)

        Why does it have to be a PC port?

        Look, I'll admit, I didn't RTFA (hey this is /.!) But why COULDN'T Microsoft create a VIRTUAL X-Box as either an application, or as part of a "Games for Windows" add-on in Win 7? (Maybe call it the V-Box?) Then all you need is a Reasonably new PC, and an adapter for your old X-Box controller. Just slap in your game and away you go!

        I mean, MS already has a Virtualization division, why not just put them to the task of making a dedicated virtual machine that exactly emulat

        • Because the xbox 360 is a 3-core power-pc cpu - based system, you couldn't virtualize it on a desktop, you'd have to emulate it. And to emulate, you need a machine at least 4 times as powerful (for a mature dynamic recompiling emulator) as the original machine.

          PCs that fast just don't exist yet.

          The original XBOX could be done easily, as it used a Pentium 3 cpu, instead of something more exotic. There was even an experimental xbox -> pc recompiler at one point, but IIRC it only worked for one game.

          • by d3ac0n (715594)

            My understanding is that the Power PC chips are actually SLOWER than x86-64 processor, but run much cooler, so MS went with them.

            And are you telling me that a Quad-core x86-64 machine couldn't emulate a TRI core power PC system? I find that hard to believe, even with the difference in instruction-sets. Let's keep in mind, Virtual machines are ALL emulation already. They are emulating a specific type of hardware that your system may or may not already have. The only limitation is core amounts. You can't

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              My understanding is that the Power PC chips are actually SLOWER than x86-64 processor, but run much cooler, so MS went with them.

              I don't know the details, I just dev for the thing.

              And are you telling me that a Quad-core x86-64 machine couldn't emulate a TRI core power PC system? I find that hard to believe, even with the difference in instruction-sets.

              Yep, that's what I'm telling you. Even better, you can't magically parallelize code, so having more than 3 cores wouldn't help much. So instead of getting the 4x performance you need for emulation by having a 12-core 3.2GHz cpu, you'd need a 3-core machine running at 12.8GHz.
              And even that might not be enough, as the theoretical performance of the 3-core Xenon cpu of the xbox is actually twice that of the fastest quad-core desktop cpu.

              You're not going to emu

    • Re:No.... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by plasmacutter (901737) on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:16AM (#26088631)

      I have one thing to add to this.

      MMO's are preferably played on PC's.

      The multitude of abilities are more easily accessed via keyboard and mouse, and there is a guarantee of enough space for patches/expansions/what have you.

      For every other genre though, i agree a console is better.

      • Re:No.... (Score:5, Interesting)

        by zehaeva (1136559) <zehaeva+slashdot@@@gmail...com> on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:33AM (#26088747)
        RTS games are joy to play on consoles then? FPS games? I'll grant you some RPG's and Platformers and a few FPS's designed from the outset to work well on consoles but every other genre than MMO's? ~zehaeva
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by DuckDodgers (541817)
          Absolutely.

          Plus, of course, some first person shooters, roleplaying games, and real time strategy games allow fan-generated content, and it's sure as hell easier to mix and match new features and new levels with a keyboard, mouse, and multi-window editor and file explorer at your disposal than a game pad.

          A console is less work to set up and has less hassle for operating system maintenance, firewalls, and anti-virus. It's also cheap. And when a generation of consoles is relatively new, they also have
      • MMO's are preferably played on PC's.

        The multitude of abilities are more easily accessed via keyboard and mouse, and there is a guarantee of enough space for patches/expansions/what have you.

        There are two console MMORPG's, Everquest Online Adventures: supports keyboard and can be fully played with just a keyboard, stores patches on memory card and Final Fantasy XI: supports keyboard and mouse, uses (and requires) the PS2 hard drive for patches/expansions.

        EQOA came out in 2003, FFXI in 2004, where have you be

    • by Kneo24 (688412)
      I'd be surprised if a console game had mouse and keyboard support.
      • by steveo777 (183629)

        Really? [wikipedia.org]

        • by Kneo24 (688412)

          Yes, really. I said "mouse and keyboard", not just a non-standard mouse designed to work for only a few games.

          • by steveo777 (183629)

            Really? [wikipedia.org]

            The XBox 360 has mouse and keyboard out of the box. Check it out [gizmodo.com]. And I know that's a peripheral/hack, but hey, it works. At any rate you can be surprised. :) Or at least entertained or intrigued if you like. Whatever works.

      • by tepples (727027)

        I'd be surprised if a console game had mouse and keyboard support.

        Animal Crossing: City Folk for Wii uses the rawther mouse-like pointing feature of the Wii Remote, and it lets players chat with a USB keyboard.

    • And where exactly would a person use a keyboard and mouse in their living room? Certainly not on their lap. Probably the only choice is to pull up your coffee table and crouch over to use the controls. Highly awkward to say the least. This is the reason PC gaming will never die. Some games can only comfortably be played at your computer desk.
      • by Bert64 (520050)

        People used to play on Amigas and C64s connected to their TV all the time...
        PC gaming is an unnecessary hassle, too many variables to contend with, poor longevity of the hardware (before it becomes obsolete for running new games, not before it fails), hassle configuring and maintaining the os and associated software including fighting against drm schemes, too many different incompatible types of hardware and their drivers, background processes hampering game performance etc.

        If you have a machine solely for

        • If you have a machine solely for gaming, then it may as well be a machine thats guaranteed to play all games released for it,

          So how does a new company without a prior published title for Windows release games for it? The market failure as of 1985 to the present is that virtually all machines designed solely for gaming happen to use cryptographic techniques to make sure that only established companies can publish games on the system.

          Where you position the console is up to you, as is what type of games you play on it.

          If a hobbyist can't break out gcc and make his own game for a console, is the latter really up to me?

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by CronoCloud (590650)

            If a hobbyist can't break out gcc and make his own game for a console, is the latter really up to me?

            [CronoCloud@mideel ~]$ cat /etc/redhat-release
            Yellow Dog Linux release 6.0 (Pyxis)
            [CronoCloud@mideel ~]$ cat /proc/cpuinfo
            processor : 0
            cpu : Cell Broadband Engine, altivec supported
            clock : 3192.000000MHz
            revision : 5.1 (pvr 0070 0501)

            processor : 1
            cpu : Cell Broadband Engine, altivec supported
            clock : 3192.000000MHz
            revision : 5.1 (pvr 0070 0501)

            timebase : 79800000

      • by tepples (727027)

        And where exactly would a person use a keyboard and mouse in their living room?

        And where exactly would people use four keyboards and mice around one monitor? There are a lot of families that can afford one console and one HDTV, and one PC (with integrated graphics) and monitor for Firefox and OpenOffice.org, but not four PCs, four monitors, and four copies of each game.

    • by Negatyfus (602326)
      1500â? I'll advise you to do some more research, as I've done recently for a potential new gaming PC. You can upgrade your entire system to a decent new rig for under 600â. It's not cheap as in console cheap, but 1500â it is not. Also, PC games are generally cheaper. I hope PC doesn't die out. :(
      • 1500[credits]? I'll advise you to do some more research, as I've done recently for a potential new gaming PC. You can upgrade your entire system to a decent new rig for under 600[credits].

        How many players can play at once on a 600[credit] system? Where I live, I can buy an LCD TV + Wii + three controllers for 1000[credits], compared to 2400[credits] for four gaming PCs.

        Also, PC games are generally cheaper.

        Not if you need four copies for four players, the way most major-label PC games are set up. I can buy a WiiWare game for about 10[credits], and I can play it with neighbors/cousins that I happen to be babysitting.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by tomhudson (43916)

      Never gonna happen.... I simply can't see that ever happening. It would at least partially mean that companies like Sony or Nintendo need to build components and allow interoperability with what is essentially an open platform. It means releasing control, they won't do that.

      Besides, unlike Sony or Microsoft, Nintendo is selling their Wiis at a profit - and they're still in short supply, not having dropped their price by even one penny since they were first introduced, unlike the other two.

      Thursday,Decem [slashdot.org]

    • Connecting a laptop to your TV? Cumbersome!

      With a console, I need to plug one end of a cable into the multi-out port and the other end into my Vizio HDTV. With a PC, all I need to do is plug one end of a VGA+audio cable into the VGA and headphone jacks of the PC and the other end into the same TV. So what makes connecting your PC to your HDTV is no more cumbersome than connecting a console? Or are you assuming SDTV?

    • NO dotdotdotdot! (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Swordsmanus (921213)

      My brother bought GTA4, and we simply can't get to run it on his 2 year old PC. He now faces the choice: pay about 1500 for a new rig in order to play GTA4 at acceptable rates. Or spend +/-450 on a PS3 and buy the game again....

      Uhhh in October I built a PC that can run GTA4 smoothly for about 550.00 USD. I could have easily brought the price down and still run the game "at acceptable rates". I dunno where you pulled that exorbant price figure from, but you can see the recommended system specs here - http:/ [wired.com]

    • by Briareos (21163) *

      pay about 1500€ for a new rig in order to play GTA4 at acceptable rates.

      Slash that 1500€ in half and we can start talking. 1500 is way excessive for a recent dual-core CPU and mobo, 2 gigs of RAM, an ATI Radeon 4850, a harddrive and a case...

      I know I paid less than 600€ for an Intel Quad Core, a Gigabyte mainboard, 2 gigs of RAM, said ATI Radeon 4850 and a new PSU a few months ago. Sure, I had the hard drives, DVD drive, case, keyboard and mouse from my old box already, but those aren't expensive either.

      np: Boy Robot - Loving You Makes Me Nervous (Glamorizing Corporat

  • by Darundal (891860) on Friday December 12, 2008 @06:50AM (#26088475) Journal
    ...because one of the primary reasons people buy consoles is that it is both cheaper than a gaming PC and, for a lot of people, easier to set up. Having that as an option with a PC is going to most assuredly complicate things and raise the cost dramatically. Losing money selling the consoles is something the companies have accepted anyway, because they expect to make up the money through licensing fees/royalties and other sources.

    I honestly could see the reverse happening though. Hell, it already is happening to a degree with the PS3 (although most people never use it as a PC and that certainly isn't a major factor in PS3 sales). The only major player I could see not doing it (at least for a while) would be Nintendo, since they are traditionally (not counting the networking features of the Famicom) conservative about adding non-gaming related features to their machines.
  • Pretty unlikely (Score:4, Insightful)

    by RogueyWon (735973) * on Friday December 12, 2008 @06:53AM (#26088493) Journal

    Ironically, though, the biggest weakness of consoles (that they are "closed boxes") is also their greatest strength and, I believe the reason why this article is wide of the mark.

    After all, with a console, you buy a game, you go home, you stick it in the drive and you play the game. Even with Sony's best efforts to thwart that on the PS3 by demanding firmware updates every 10 minutes, the system hasn't changed much. By contrast, two of the last 4 PC games I bought (Spore and Far Cry 2) have required me to faff around with drivers before they would run. Now, sure, I'm a reasonably advanced user by the standards of the general public (though a veritable neophyte in slashdot terms), but this is awkward and irritating.

    There's also the price issue. A console will set you back a few hundred dollars, but you then don't need to replace it for 4-5 years. A gaming PC will set you back at least twice as much (and frequently more) and will generally be obsolete within two and a half years, unless you're willing to sink a lot of money into interim upgrades.

    Now, even if you get around the ease-of-use issue by basically putting a console inside the PC (anybody remember the old Mega-PC, which had a Megadrive/Genesis inside a PC case?) you are still going to be in a situation where the thing is locked into a piece of hardware with a far faster obsolescence cycle.

    This is before you even start to get into ergonomic issues, such as the fact that the general usage pattern is that people use PCs with a monitor at a desk, but play console games on their TV while sat on the sofa.

  • is an environment that users can't screw up. If you move these systems onto a computer, they are then going to have to compete with background processes eating up CPU cycles, malware, and the occasional stupid user. I can't imagine why console manufacturer would want to deal with that kind of stuff. Wouldn't it then just become a computer game that you can't play with out first purchasing a "PS3 License"?
    • So its the console makers funding the malware bot networks to make PCs so crap :) ahhhhhhhhhhhh

      Closed system suck tho. And making a PC with cheapest parts + $99 video card can be done cheaper than a ps3, especially outside USA, and thats the key here, OUTSIDE usa, where its a known fact that those corps like to sell in USA low, and over charge outside to make americans feel special.

  • by Xest (935314) on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:00AM (#26088543)

    1) The games industry is already shifting away from the PC to closed platforms like consoles because they claim they make more profit due to not having the piracy issues they get on the PC. To them, this would be seen as a step backwards.

    2) If one company manages to screw up the latest console plugin does the company want to be associated with that- Microsoft owned up to the original RROD problems and put money aside to deal with it, they've resolved the issues but to this day get slated for the problem. Would they really want to put themselves in a position where the latest Dell notebook has poor venting around Dell's hardware design is making their component fail and they get the blame for it? It's one thing if it's their fault, but if it's a 3rd party's fault and they risk the blame?

    3) Do they really want to spend money offering support to the various hardware developers that want to implement their addons? Do they want to deal with compatibility issues? Do they want to spend and money time keeping their systems secure whilst keeping them open enough to integrate?

  • by ludomancer (921940) on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:04AM (#26088569)

    PC's are too "open" for the comfort of many industries. By moving focus to more restrictive consoles, companies regain their control. Once they have control, the ability to push ads you can't block, monitor what you're doing for marketing, and limit what you are allowed to do or not do with media, consoles will eventually come full-circle so that users will eventually be using them for the same things PC users have been, only in safe, friendly, controlled environment.

    Suckers.

    • PC's are too "open" for the comfort of many industries. By moving focus to more restrictive consoles, companies regain their control. Once they have control, the ability to push ads you can't block, monitor what you're doing for marketing, and limit what you are allowed to do or not do with media, consoles will eventually come full-circle so that users will eventually be using them for the same things PC users have been, only in safe, friendly, controlled environment.

      Suckers.

      that's what mod chips are for.

    • by zehaeva (1136559)

      biggest problem is that if all the hardware out there is in the form of consoles then there is nothing but consoles for all of those enterprising individuals who love to tinker with software and hardware(read pirates). you would quickly see people jail breaking, as it were, their consoles with additional hardware or software upgrades to use the systems as the end user wants, not how Sony/MS/Nintendo wants.

      The hardware is in the hands of the enemy and you'll have a hard time preventing anyone from cracking o

      • by Bert64 (520050)

        It's not the "security" aspect of consoles which makes them attractive...
        Piracy occurs on consoles anyway, just look at the mod scene or go visit thepiratebay and see how many consoles games are available to download.
        The advantage of a console is that the hardware is static... Games developers are not saddled with compatibility middleware, they can bypass it and take full advantage of the hardware, and end users have the convenience of knowing that any game they buy for their console will work out of the bo

      • biggest problem is that if all the hardware out there is in the form of consoles then there is nothing but consoles for all of those enterprising individuals who love to tinker with software and hardware(read pirates). you would quickly see people jail breaking, as it were, their consoles with additional hardware or software upgrades to use the systems as the end user wants, not how Sony/MS/Nintendo wants.

        of course, only the evil pirates ever want to tinker with stuff. No one ever likes to tinker with stuff unless they want to break the law obviously

      • So people who upgrade their video cards are pirates now?

    • PC's are too "open" for the comfort of many industries. By moving focus to more restrictive consoles, companies regain their control. Once they have control, the ability to push ads you can't block, monitor what you're doing for marketing, and limit what you are allowed to do or not do with media, consoles will eventually come full-circle so that users will eventually be using them for the same things PC users have been, only in safe, friendly, controlled environment.

      Suckers.

      We're witnessing that same dynamic with cell phones. The whole "walled garden" phenomenon is going to have to be dealt with by government trust-busting because there's no way the consumers would ever have enough power to force it on their own.

    • by Pharmboy (216950)

      What is more likely is that consoles will become general purpose computers. I can surf the web on my Wii now, check email, etc. They even have people porting Linux to them for free now, so creating a "game" or mode that is a simple OS would be pretty trivial.

  • In the year 2000... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    First of all, there will always be gaming on desktops/laptops. People who say that PC gaming will collapse and end are absolutely wrong. For as long as there have been computers, one of the many uses people have put them to is gaming. As long as there are computers, there will be games for them.

    As for the console market collapsing back to PCs, I don't know. Anything is possible. And it's impossible to tell the future. But he makes a very good point.

    The projected longevity of the PS3 is what, 10 years? That'

  • Look at the PS3. You can turn it into a PC if you so choose. The choice is already there. I just think Stude has it wrong on how it will happen.
  • The other way around (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Kjella (173770) on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:28AM (#26088715) Homepage

    The far more likely situation I would think is that you'd have a DRM locked console with a virtualized PC running on top where you could run anything you want. You'd have a simple "game mode/PC mode" switch to not mess with what they already have. It wouldn't do much for gaming, but it'd run pretty much all the basic utilities of a home PC without needing a separate box.

    I think it could be a valuable supplement to those that only have a laptop, which is quite many these days. Sure it might sound a little odd writing a letter on your huge livingroom TV but I'd rather go with a 40"+ TV and a full-sized wireless keyboard than the laptop. Obviously if you have a proper desktop that's better, but many don't.

    • by loafula (1080631)
      The PS3 is already an example of this- you can install linux on it right out of the box. It's funny though, pc fonts are designed to be read from a position a few feet in front of a monitor in the 20" range. When you start displaying websites on a 40" tv from 7-10' away, things become way too tiny.
  • by jollyreaper (513215) on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:44AM (#26088825)

    This is going to be like the whole debate with thin client and fat client, centralized vs. decentralized computing, etc. It's always going to go back and forth.

    Back in the PSX and PS2 era, it became stupid to try to keep up with PC gaming. A really good video card would cost as much as a proper console and the console would remain playable far longer whereas the computer would become outdated far more quickly. Game on consoles, work on computers, no-brainer.

    With this generation, the consoles are getting too damn expensive. By the time you factor in accessories, you easily spend as much on them as PC's now. It's actually getting back to the point where if you already need a PC, it's just cheaper to spend extra to turn it into a gaming machine rather than gettin a work PC and a gaming rig.

    Xbox 360 - was around $299
    Extra controller - $50
    Charging kit for a controller - $30
    wireless adapter - $75
    if you decide the 20gb drive is too small, you want the 120 - $200
    memory card to serve as a backup to the hard drive - $50
    headphones so you don't wake up the read of the house at night - $75

    $779. And if you decided to upgrade the TV from the ol' CRT to a proper HDTV to look nice with the console, $1000 and up.

    • by bi_boy (630968) on Friday December 12, 2008 @08:16AM (#26089053)

      Your post almost makes a good point about spending money on a gaming PC instead of a console except the total is not $1000 and up. It's simply the price of the console. $300-$400. Current generation video cards alone will meet or double that cost. Really, it was a stretch to try to include all of those accessories as a TCO for a gaming console when really it is just the cost of the console for the average gamer.

      As stated many times before the main strong point of consoles (used to be at least) that they just worked. Buy game, put game in console, play game. No drivers, no wacky DRM raping your dataz and privacy, no "oh wow I really need to upgrade my videocard!" moments. There will always be a place for PC gaming but to think it will extinguish the market for consoles is foolhardy.

    • by Bert64 (520050)

      But consider...

      Extra controller - only if you want 2 people to play on one console at the same time, is this even commonly done on a PC? I've never seen that so it's an unfair comparison.
      Wireless - assuming you want to use the networking capabilities wirelessly, many people are perfectly happy with cables, my xbox is under the tv and the phoneline terminates next to the antenna socket for the tv, so the dsl router was already there.
      Bigger drive - or you could save money by buying the machine with the bigger

    • by will_die (586523)
      So what is the cost for the yearly x-box live, the extra costs for downloadable content that PCs get for free and the extra cost you pay for the software vs what you can purchase it for on the PC.
    • 80GB PS3 - $399
      Extra controller - $50
      Standard 120GB laptop SATA drive - call it $80, can be much less
      Headphones - okay, $75.
      External adapter so you can use that 80GB drive to back up the 120GB one - $15

      Call it $620, though you might get as low as $600 or so. Or you could throw in a 320GB SATA drive. Plus, the PS3's a Blu-ray player. The up-front cost's more, sure, but the PS3 actually includes most of the 'accessories' you'd want.

      Still, I agree that's a tough sell in this economy, either way. PCs can

  • by EWAdams (953502) on Friday December 12, 2008 @07:53AM (#26088891) Homepage

    The PC is optimized for one person to use at a distance of maybe 0.5 m. It sits on a desk. It is a lousy multi-player device.

    The console is optimized for multiple people to use at a distance of 2 m. It sits in the living room. It is an excellent multi-player device, and, even if equipped with a keyboard and mouse, a highly inconvenient personal computer.

    This is in addition to the cost reasons already cited.

    • by kabocox (199019)

      The PC is optimized for one person to use at a distance of maybe 0.5 m. It sits on a desk. It is a lousy multi-player device.

      The console is optimized for multiple people to use at a distance of 2 m. It sits in the living room. It is an excellent multi-player device, and, even if equipped with a keyboard and mouse, a highly inconvenient personal computer.

      This is in addition to the cost reasons already cited.

      Nah, I think with cheap 16-32 GB flash cards that even a PS2 would make a perfectly fine universal com

  • The reason consoles and PC are separate is because every console uses the same hardware. You buy a PS3, and it will work in the same way as another PS3 (barring minor chip revisions, carefully checked to be backwards compatible). You can easily tailor your code to take advantage of the specific platform, introducing lots of little tricks to speed things up.
    On a PC, however, you have to code for as many hardware devices as possible. Instead of optimising, you're generalising. For a PC to also act as a cons
    • by tbannist (230135)

      More importantly:

      Same Hardware and Same O/S. I seriously doubt the Xbox division of Microsoft wants to deal with the situation where someone's Xbox-PC won't work because they got 3 zero-day drive-by worms from Internet Explorer and a virus from opening an infected word file someone sent them from work.

      Consoles are nice because they just work all the time. PCs are nice (for gaming) because you can tinker with them to get best performance out of them. Those two values sets are mutually exclusive in the sam

  • Been done before (Score:3, Informative)

    by Nick Ives (317) on Friday December 12, 2008 @09:16AM (#26089623)

    Amstad MegaPC [wikipedia.org] and the Sega TeraDrive [wikipedia.org], both obviously failed.

    Those machines were basically just a PC and a Megadrive (or Genesis as you USians knew them) in the same box. I seriously doubt you could get away with integrating a console into a PC as an expansion card because then you'd need to start testing games on umpteen different mobo combinations to be sure of compatibility, negating one of the major benefits of using a console in the first place.

    Also, I don't see how it would stop MS or Sony loosing money on hardware at the start of a generation (I believe 360 hardware now turns a profit?). A company like Dell isn't going to shoulder a loss for Sony as they're not going to see any licensing revenue from games. Consumers would see an integrated box that is more expensive than two separate boxes and vote with their wallets.

  • As long as all the mainstream consoles right now are using PowerPC cores, they're about as close to PCs as goat cheese is to cows milk.

    I'm all for PCs starting to use PowerPC though, if it means running console games on them. I doubt anyone would be too disappointed if they got a PC with a Cell or two in it.

  • Merge back? The Atari 2600 came out in 1977, 4 years before the first PC (If we define PC as 'IBM PC').
    • And the Magnavox odyssey came out in 1972, before the first generation of home computers (The PET, Apple II, and TRS-80) No, the Altair doesn't count.

  • What we've seen will continue: consoles have begun to merge with HTPC's in their ability to play digital music, movies, photos, etc. They can't record/play tv shows, but can stream them over their internet connection via some tightly controlled channels (hulu, netflix, etc.). Since the console controls the TV, I think this trend will continue. HTPC/Apple TV's don't stand a chance. That said, there will always be a need for a standalone PC to do WORK on. You could use a spreadsheet in the living room, but y
  • by poot_rootbeer (188613) on Friday December 12, 2008 @10:23AM (#26090613)

    PCs are PCs and consoles are consoles. If hybridization didn't succeed for the Odyssey^2, Commodore 64GS, Coleco ADAM, Atari XEGS, Amiga CDTV, CDi, Sega TeraDrive, Amstrad Mega PC, FM TOWNS Marty, and 3DO -- why would it succeed now?

  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Friday December 12, 2008 @11:51AM (#26092019)
    ... other than profit for the console makers. PCs, with good graphics adapters, were always been capable of doing the same things as the consoles of any given year.

    I don't see wasting my money on a console when for $100 more I can get a PC that will do all the same things plus a LOT more!

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