Author Topic: Episode #17 - Picasa slashes prices, mixed GPU gaming and AMD wins $1.25 Billion  (Read 4133 times)

Offline Zeus

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We have just posted up Episode #17 of Weekly Tech Update.  Below are the show notes and some details on how you can more free stuff.


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Youtube goes 1080p 1:29
If you love HD and have a ton of bandwidth for uploading and downloading Youtube videos it appears that they now support 1080p video.  They will have to raise to the video clip storage limit and ISP are going to love the amount of uploading that will happen.

Google cuts Picasa storage prices. 9:26
Google has finally got their act together and dropped the price for Picasa photo storage.  It used to be $20 for 6GB and now they are running 20GB for $5.  It’s not a bad way to back up your pictures.  If you want 16TB of Picasa storage, you can get it for a mere $4096 per year.

Amazon Kindle for PC E-Book Software 14:47
Amazon has a nice piece of software that allows you to read their eBooks on your PC.  While this is no replacement for an eBook reader it allows you to read some material on your PC and synchronize your book with your Kindle.  That way you don’t have to try and remember where you are in the book.  Check it out as the software is free.

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 - Also announced New Call of Duty Title for 2010 22:20
Call of Duty 6 (aka Modern Warfare 2) is making waves and the lack of dedicated servers is very annoying, that being said it seems that they’ve sold over $300,000,000 worth of software in the first week.  Apparently it’s not enough though as they are already planning the release of Call of Duty in 2010.  Hopefully they don’t kill the MW2 servers at that time.
Gaming information sent in by D.Norman in the following post.

Microsoft bans 1 Million users from XBOX Live. 39:09
If you’re going to play a pirated version of a game, you should at least wait until the game is release so you don’t draw extra attention to yourself.  Although in the show, I mentioned that the Live account was suspended, it appears that Microsoft did indeed ban the actual console as well.  Be careful if you now find a cheap Xbox 360.  It could be blocked from Xbox Live and Microsoft won’t likely have much sympathy for you.

Lucid Hydra Multi-GPU 44:29
If you want to get the most of your graphics cards without being loyal to a particular company, Lucid is demo’ing their Hydra 200 technology that allows you to mix AMD and NVIDIA cards and still get the most out of both cards without worrying about CrossfireX or SLI.  This is a good thing that I believe Intel will try and snag in the next 12 months.

AMD vs Intel lawsuit settled. Intel to pay AMD 1.25 Billion 52:05
AMD had a few anti-trust lawsuits filed against Intel that have been dragging on for a long time.  Intel finally decided to settle with AMD and coughed up a mere $1.25 Billion to make AMD go away.  Intel investors didn’t seem to care and stocks stayed pretty much static.  AMD stock went up a nice 20% however.

November Ultra X4 850W PSU Giveaway!
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Reviews since Episode #16:
Arctic Cooling NC Notebook Cooler 55:12
NZXT Beta EVO Case 56:01

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November Ultra X4 850W PSU Giveaway!
« Last Edit: November 18, 2009, 07:51:40 AM by Zeus »

Offline Zeus

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The following information has been submitted by D. Norman.  Thanks for taking time to listen and to write WTU!

Quote
The PC is the largest single platform for games with annual worldwide revenue of about $11 billion. This is more than any of the console and portable systems from Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. Even in North America and Western Europe the PC is the leading single platform for games with over $6 billion in combined revenue from those markets. http://www.videogamer.com/

Full told, the consumer PC and game hardware market was $68 billion in 2008, and that’s expected to hit $143 billion in 2013. The installed base of consumer PCs capable of playing games in 2008 was 228 million, and by 2013 that number will hit more than 600 million. The closest rival platforms are the Nintendo DS at 100 million, the Sony PlayStation 2 at 136-million-plus, and the Nintendo Wii at 50 million-plus.

Are consumers actually playing games on those computers? About 60 percent of U.S. consumers over 18 play some kind of games, according to Bob O’Donnell, an analyst at IDC. About 59 percent prefer the PC as their primary game platform, he said.
http://games.venturebeat.com/2009/05/28/pc-game-software-grew-18-percent-in-2008-with-china-taking-the-lead/

The bottom line numbers for Sony and Microsoft’s game business are not pretty. From fiscal 2007 to fiscal 2009, Sony’s game division showed an operating loss of well over $3 billion. Meanwhile, during the period from 2004 to 2009, Microsoft’s Entertainment & Devices Division has lost over $4 billion. Much of this loss can be attributed to the cost associated with launching a new console system that is sold at a loss. The reality is Sony and Microsoft really need their hardware systems to have a true 10-year lifecycle so that initial costs can be amortized.

In short, without a major new console system to pump up consumer enthusiasm the game industry faces an inevitable decline. Other platforms like the PC and mobile systems are expected to keep growing, but not enough to offset the decline from the existing console systems.

Of course, there will always be room for major blockbuster products. Even in the absence of new hardware we can expect a handful of new must-have titles every year that far outpace the rest of the market. However, the gap between the haves and have-nots will continue to widen. Companies that have been dependent on getting consumers to buy non-AAA titles are the ones that will suffer the most.
http://www.dfcint.com/wp/?p=258

Perhaps Infinity Ward should reconsider..
« Last Edit: November 16, 2009, 09:07:39 PM by Zeus »

Offline Teh Pyro

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Changing servers 3 times in one map must've been painful. I hate to keep dragging the whole MW2-PC feud but that's just unacceptable, especially since it groups people in by ping rather than skill level. If you're right about Activision creating a CoD game that charges for PC multiplayer... well, I hope other companies don't follow suit. The easy solution would be to just allow dedicated servers and relieve themselves from managing the network infrastructure (at least for PC gamers).

Enough ranting about MW2. Lucid Hydra seems like an amazing idea in theory, but it seems to be too good to be true. I was anticipating the release of the MSI Big Bang P55 board in November but I believe that's been delayed. No benchmarks yet with the chipset in use so I'll wait a while before I consider giving it a shot. CrossfireX seems like the best route for multi-GPU setups considering how well the recent 5*** series cards scale. If I'm not mistaken, two HD 5770s in crossfireX should yield gains as high as 1.7x the performance of a single card.