Sony Predicts Gaming/Home Network At COMDEX

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The PC will not be the center of the home network for long, said Sony president Nobuyuki Idei at Comdex yesterday. The ubiquitous computer will soon share its duty as the network's nexus, he predicted, along with the television and PlayStation II game console.

Sony said the release of the PlayStation II next fall will not only spur the development of a more pervasive home network but the game console's Internet capability will give homeowners a strong reason to adopt broadband Internet access. Broadband access (most likely delivered over cable modems, said Idei) will enable better multi-player gaming on the Web. Many of the 250 PlayStation II games now under development will take advantage of this capability.

Idei also announced that Sony has licensed the Palm Computing operating system and intends to integrate it into certain Sony Vaio products, most likely notebooks. In addition, Palm is expected to adapt its OS to operate with Sony's MemoryStick flash memory cards. Idei also introduced new applications being developed in the MemoryStick format, including one that is basically a wireless adapter. This product, expected to ship in late 2000, will give any MemoryStick device wireless capability.

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