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Google Developing Android Game Console 143

Posted by Soulskill
from the with-thanks-to-ouya-for-doing-the-proof-of-concept dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A report by the Wall Street Journal says Google is working on an Android-based gaming console in addition to the long-rumored smartwatch. 'The hardware plans are the latest sign of Google's determination to build on the success of Android, the software it launched in 2008 that powered 75% of all smartphones and 57% of tablets shipped globally in the first quarter, according to the research firm IDC. ... The people briefed on the matter said Google is reacting in part to expectations that rival Apple will launch a videogame console as part of its next Apple TV product release.' This development push comes as the company is wrapping up work on Android 4.3, and as the Kickstarted, Android-based Ouya console is finding success in retail markets. Google is also reportedly working on a revision to its Nexus Q media streaming device, which the company announced last year and quickly shelved after they realized it was a bit weird and not terribly useful."
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Google Developing Android Game Console

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  • by TWiTfan (2887093) on Friday June 28, 2013 @08:56AM (#44131313)

    Because I could swear I just saw one of these in a Best Buy flyer last weekend

  • More options (Score:3, Interesting)

    by crashcy (2839507) on Friday June 28, 2013 @08:56AM (#44131317)
    So the Ouya is out, and Apple, Google, and Valve are all working on consoles. I'll be interested in seeing how they develop, but the more competition for Microsoft/Sony, the better for the consumer.
    • by TWiTfan (2887093)

      Looks like 2014 is shaping up to be the Year of the Consoles. LOTS of consoles.

      • Hopefully not like 1983 [wikipedia.org].
        • Hopefully not like 1983 [wikipedia.org].

          The crash was mainly due to the lack of quality games and lots of poor ones, Android/Valve/Apple already have an abundance of successful games already, and all are in control of their shops..so can enforce any kind of quality control.

          • by TWiTfan (2887093) on Friday June 28, 2013 @09:41AM (#44131657)

            Actually, speaking from my own experience, I can tell you that a lot of gamers at that time had simply abandoned their consoles for Commodore 64's. You could even use the same joystick (beat the hell out of that sorry-ass 5200 controller). Atari had counted on 2600 fans to move on to the 5200. But for the same price, you could just buy a Commodore. And games were a helluva lot cheaper on the Commodore, since it was so easy to pirate them.

            • by tepples (727027)

              But for the same price [as an Atari 5200 console], you could just buy a Commodore.

              Including the 1541 disk drive? And how long did it take for games to load on a C64 compared to the second- and third-generation consoles?

              • But for the same price [as an Atari 5200 console], you could just buy a Commodore.

                Including the 1541 disk drive? And how long did it take for games to load on a C64 compared to the second- and third-generation consoles?

                The C64 had a cartridge port.

                Regarding loading games from a floppy disk ... it took a trivial, inconsequential amount of time for games that were cartridge sized. Plus it allowed games that were much larger than an 8K cartridge could allow.

                • The C64 had a cartridge port.

                  Yes, that none of the great C64 games were on.

                  Regarding loading games from a floppy disk ... it took a trivial, inconsequential amount of time for games that were cartridge sized.

                  yes, but most floppy games were NOT cartridge sized. and the wait wasn't trivial. 2 minutes and 47 seconds for Flight Simulator II! God knows how long for some of those strategy games or Gold Box RPG's.

                  One of the reasons the NES stomped the C64 was better graphics and NO load times.

              • by Nyder (754090)

                But for the same price [as an Atari 5200 console], you could just buy a Commodore.

                Including the 1541 disk drive? And how long did it take for games to load on a C64 compared to the second- and third-generation consoles?

                And yet that didn't stop the sale of C64's.

            • Actually, speaking from my own experience, I can tell you that a lot of gamers at that time had simply abandoned their consoles for Commodore 64's.

              The more affluent upper middle class kids, perhaps. in 1983 the C64 alone with no printer, monitor or 1541 cost the equivalent of $1400.

              People without that kind of money, had to stick with what they had till the NES came out. There's a reason you could still buy new 2600 games in 1987

              And games were a helluva lot cheaper on the Commodore, since it was so easy to pirate them.

              Which led companies to stop developing them for or porting them to the Commodore platforms and sticking with DOS...since they had more money (obviously) and were willing to actually pay money for games compared to the 2600 ow

    • The way I see it, if I can play the latest and greatest via Steam without having to worry about also using the same PC for web browsing and installing random programs that will just slow it down or make it unstable, that could be my next PC. My current PC would do just fine at being turned into my IRC/Trillian/Media/Web surfing PC.
      • by h4rr4r (612664)

        How does web browsing and installing programs make a computer slow or unstable?

        I don't use windows, but is this still the reality windows users face?

        • How does web browsing and installing programs make a computer slow or unstable?

          Pages open in a minimized web browser keep running script functions triggered by window.setInterval(). Installed programs want to keep their own update notifiers and other daemons (Winamp Agent, Apple Mobile Device Service, Java Quick Starter, etc.) running in the background.

          • by h4rr4r (612664)

            You could close the web browser.

            Still not having a centralized update system is a pretty big failing of windows. I am not suggesting a store, but a repository system like that used in linux where I can add the chrome repo instead of having some stupid updater.

            • I've often thought that apps should "register" with an update service in windows, so that windows can control update checking times, and simply call into the registered app for them to check on updates, and report any back into the windows UI... so that updates can happen through a regular interface... though I've thought this since around 2001.. but hey.. what do I know.
              • by h4rr4r (612664)

                Again way more complicated and not as good as what I am suggesting. Still better than what they currently use though.

    • So the Ouya is out, and Apple, Google, and Valve are all working on consoles. I'll be interested in seeing how they develop, but the more competition for Microsoft/Sony, the better for the consumer.

      Except of course when the game you want is on a different console to the one you own. Dedicated console gamers have bought all three consoles in the past for this reason. Will they fee they have to buy even more now?

    • The best part is the Ouya can work as a thin client for your Steam box. nVidia supports this natively via their Shield device [nvidia.com] and a gtx 650 or higher video card (those video cards have a built in x264 encoder), it's rumored that this functionality will be extended to Tegra 3 devices (which would include the Ouya).

      For older video cards (and until nVidia expands the capability), there's Kainy [google.com]. Which will allow you to do the same.

      • That would actually bring me to use my Ouya for more than just a legacy game emulator (Atari, NES, SNES, Sega Genesis/MD, etc).
  • By 2020, all operating systems will be Android.
    • By 2020, all operating systems will be Android.

      Its set to become the dominant Operating system this year. PC's currently have about 1.2 Billion Machines. The last measure I have seen was 750 million devices activated in total and 1.5 million activations and that was Q32012

    • Android is the Windows of the mobile world. The default OS for people that don't know any better.

  • ever get the feeling Google is just throwing crap at the wall to see what sticks? i mean, im not try to suggest their products arent good ( ive got the nexus 10 which is great ) - but they seem to at a stage of being reactive in the industry and if something doesnt make enough of a bang, they can it.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 28, 2013 @09:19AM (#44131463)
      Here, you dropped these: ' ' ' '
    • by LordNimon (85072)
      ever get the feeling Google is just throwing crap at the wall to see what sticks?

      You're only realizing this now??? This is has been Google's M.O. almost since day one!
    • When you're sitting on a pile of cash bigger than Kilimanjaro, then you can afford it.
      • When you're sitting on a pile of cash bigger than Kilimanjaro, then you can afford it.

        Is that why their home is called "Mountain View"?

    • That is part of capitalism. Sometimes you innovate, sometimes you replicate. Companies are driven by profits, not ideals.
      • Companies are driven by profits

        No, this is a very fundemental, yet very common misunderstanding.

        Companies are like Soylent Green: they're made of people. As such they are driven by the whims and desires of the people in charge. Clearly they have to make a profit to stay around, but beyond the "enough profit to not be going out of business", companies can happily flop and flail round doing whatever the people making up the company actually do from day to day.

        In practice, the rutheless drive for profit does n

    • by TWiTfan (2887093)

      That's what happens when you give your employees one day a week to just work on crazy shit. ;-)

  • Speculation (Score:4, Insightful)

    by coinreturn (617535) on Friday June 28, 2013 @09:19AM (#44131455)
    More speculation. When a similar rumor came out about Apple, all the haters here cried about how /. was reporting on imaginary hardware.
    • There are no attributable quotes in the story, said a person familiar with the article. A Wall Street Journal spokesman declined to comment.
    • More speculation. When a similar rumor came out about Apple, all the haters here cried about how /. was reporting on imaginary hardware.

      Except it wasn't a similar rumour; it just wasn't a console. http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/12/4421534/ios-7-to-include-standardized-game-controller-support [theverge.com] iOS 7 to include standardized game controller support.

      This is about the follow up to the never launched Nexus Q a media hub...which nobody really knew what to do with. Suddenly with Sony & Microsoft both pushing their game consoles as media hubs, and well a number of Android gaming consoles have already launched. I personally own two...OUYA and The

  • by alen (225700) on Friday June 28, 2013 @09:38AM (#44131629)

    two in fact. they are called the iphone and the ipad. the ipad version has the graphical power of an xbox 360 and some games like real racing take advantage of it.

    the Apple TV is a cheapo device to allow you to stream the games to your TV along with some streaming options

    Apple is not going to sell a full game console because
    1. game consoles have this problem of being locked to a TV. you can't play on the train to work
    2. the "real gamer" market is a minority now. there are tens of thousands of iOS games out there. lots of them make more money than the real console games.
    3. apple uses the same parts in all products. building a special console means a more powerful chip with a limited manufacturing run. apple is not going to do it
    4. a more powerful Apple TV is going to cost more money and sell less units. apple uses flash memory. you can't have a good console with 16GB flash

    • two in fact. they are called the iphone and the ipad.>

      I don't disagree with you, you could argue they are full blown computers, TV's...but that would not stop them being relatively tiny compared to a 40" screen with dedicated controllers. I just got my OUYA working...Apple have nothing to compete.

      • by alen (225700)

        apple tv is only $99. if you want to play games on the TV you buy an apple tv and use airplay to stream to your TV. some games are even coded to display data on the iphone or ipad and the picture on the TV like the Wii

        the whole idea is that for $499 you get a device you can take anywhere and does gaming, internet, books, movies, tv, music, email and other things. instead of a $399 or $499 console that is locked to the TV

        • by Nyder (754090)

          apple tv is only $99. if you want to play games on the TV you buy an apple tv and use airplay to stream to your TV. some games are even coded to display data on the iphone or ipad and the picture on the TV like the Wii

          the whole idea is that for $499 you get a device you can take anywhere and does gaming, internet, books, movies, tv, music, email and other things. instead of a $399 or $499 console that is locked to the TV

          Isn't that $499 device called a laptop?

      • I just got my OUYA working...Apple have nothing to compete.

        If you had to "get it working" then Apple most certainly can compete with that.

        • If you had to "get it working" then Apple most certainly can compete with that.

          Apple only works with their own proprietary hardware; software; I notice they have launched another incompatible connector this week. That only worked when they were dominant. Now its a foolish strategy, that locks Apple out of new markets, rather than their customers in.

          ....and you still have to set up the damn device.

      • Who would want to compete with Ouya, it's a piece of shit destined for a abysmal failure.
    • apple uses flash memory. you can't have a good console with 16GB flash

      Note that Ouya has 8GB flash and Nvidia Shield has 16GB flash. And Moore's law would indicate that the next Apple TV release would have 32GB flash.

      iPhone and iPad are indeed great mobile device platforms. They've already taken that market from Nintendo and Sony. But they can have all the graphical power of a 360, they don't compete against TV and game-controller based consoles. Apple TV could.

      I have no doubt at all that the next Apple TV will be capable of running apps. But maybe Apple won't launch it speci

      • by iluvcapra (782887)

        I have no doubt at all that the next Apple TV will be capable of running apps

        I'd say if Apple had the choice of selling a twice-as-powerful AppleTV for the same price, or the same AppleTV for $49, they'd do the latter. Let the games be played on other parts of the network, and let the bridge to the TV simply be a dumb box. That way you minimize the Dread Fragmentation by keeping the phone/pad at the center of the ecosystem.

        • There's no technical reason why the Apple TV they are selling now couldn't run apps. All it needs is as SDK for developers and an App Store.

          Apps need to be written to work with a TV sized screen and controllers, regardless of whether they actually run on the iPhone or the Apple TV. So whilst it is strictly speaking fragmentation, as it's a different category, rather than just another random variation of a phone, it's not pointless fragmentation.

          $99 is already cheap for an Apple Product. Whilst the iPod Shuf

  • by ArcadeMan (2766669) on Friday June 28, 2013 @09:43AM (#44131677)

    For anyone wondering about Apple, most people think it's going to be the Apple TV. Coupled with an iOS 7 update, it will allow wireless controllers.

  • Google blew it with google TV imo. It wasn't usable at all, unless you already had cable or directTV and paid for all of the extra services. I realize a game console is very different in that respect. I'm saying I didn't think google put enough effort into making google TV useful. And I'm concerned they will go the same route with a gaming console....

    Ouya has been a disappointment, not in the idea, just not enough support for it to be worth it.

    These are all just my opinions obviously

    • by gl4ss (559668)

      the real joke with google tv is that they spend quite a lot of buck to customize android for it and yet uncustomized android tv boxes work better for the functionality than google tv does. waste of money.

    • Google blew it with google TV imo.

      http://dx.com/c/consumer-electronics-199/hd-media-players-103/android-hd-players-191 [dx.com] This is one Chinese shop. They currently selling 560 Different googleTV devices ranging in price from $35-$200. Just becasue you wasn't interested does not mean everyone else wasn't...I went for a Raspberry Pi with XBMC, but It was a toss up.

      The OUYA is great. I have just unpacked mine, and is of surprisingly high quality. The games are fun and cheap. I wouldn't hesitate in suggesting anyone else own one.

      Opinions should be

      • None of the devices on the page you listed run Google TV. None of them.

        I'm not sure if you are honestly misinformed about what we're talking about or are just cocksure and arrogant to others while being ignorant yourself.

      • by BLToday (1777712)

        Those are all Android devices not Google TV devices.

  • I read the article and I'm not seeing "cloud" in it. Something must be missing. Everything new and high-performance uses "the cloud".

    /snark

  • You're way to late. Apple already has a device out called the Pippin [wikipedia.org].
  • I give a google based console twice the life of a ouya. So it should be last at least 2 days. Sorry but no one wants to play shitty mobile games on their tv.

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