It seems that Android is starting to slowly extend its presence away from smartphones and tablets, but this is not a bad thing as a new Kickstarter project shows. Meet the OUYA: A New Kind of Video Game Console based on an open Android platform and running Android-based games on your TV. A portable, power efficient, nice looking, comfortable to use, hackers welcome and affordable to get… sounds promising right? And apparently the community likes the project considering the fact that the goal of the project of $950,000 USD has been reached in just a few hours and in day one of the project announcement it has more than two million dollars pledged, a clear sign that the gaming community really likes the project and what it offers.
But looking a bit more at the specifications of the OUYA we can find some interesting things, like the fact that the console will be powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 3 platform and use Android 4.0 as an operating system. We’ve heard Nvidia say that the Tegra 3 is capable of console quality graphics and now maybe we’ll actually see the first console that can prove it is not only the graphics, but the full console experience that can rival what Microsoft ans Sony are currently offering with their game consoles. Not to mention that such projects can also bring a lot more high-quality games to be available for Android platform.
– Tegra3 quad-core processor
– 1GB RAM
– 8GB of internal flash storage
– HDMI connection to the TV, with support for up to 1080p HD
– WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
– Bluetooth LE 4.0
– USB 2.0 (one)
– Wireless controller with standard controls (two analog sticks, d-pad, eight action buttons, a system button), a touchpad
– Android 4.0
What is more interesting in the fact that the OUYA will be based around the Tegra 3 is the fact that it will have support for stereoscopic 3D gaming as well as the platform from Nvidia does have built-in support for that when you connect it to an external 3D HDTV. I’ve recently written about using Tegra 3 with a 3D HDTV or 3D monitor over HDMI 1.4 to play games in stereoscopic 3D mode on a tablet and the good news is that the same experience should be achievable on the OUYA as well. So OUYA could really also turn out to be the first stereoscopic 3D-capable gaming console that will support stereo 3D from day one and with the very attractive price tag expected it could turn out to be a hit among stereoscopic 3D gamers as well. Hopefully also pushing the development of more games to support stereoscopic 3D on Android and Tegra 3 as the number of supported titles is still not that high. Another project that I expect a with interest is the Wikipad tablet that also will be based on Tegra 3, but since it will be a tablet it will also have a display, an autostereoscopic 3D-capable one. So things about stereoscopic 3D support on Android are definitely going to become more and more interesting…
CyberLink has just launched a new version of its popular multimedia software, MediaShow 6. A powerful yet simple software intended to assists users to quickly and logically organize media in different ways, apply simple fixes or enhance them with stylistic elements. With the help of some simple yet advanced tools you could share photos and videos to social communities or burn them to DVD or Blu-ray Discs for watching them at home. And the new version of the software comes with support for importing, organization and playback of 3D photos and 3D videos (along with the traditional support for 2D media of course). You should also be able to quickly correct and fine tune video and photo imperfections on both 2D and 3D media, create stylish slideshows using 2D or 3D photos, animated text effects and transitions and then burn the finished composition is stereo 3D format as well.
CyberLink’s MediaShow 6 comes in two versions, an Ultra one available for $69.95 USD and a slightly more limited in terms of extra functionality Deluxe version available for $49.95 USD. In the Deluxe version you are not able to edit 3D photos and videos, autoconvert 2D media to 3D and burn 3D DVD/Blu-ray/AVCHD discs, these features are only present in MediaShow 6 Ultra. MediaShow 6 should come with support for the following 3D display solutions: Nvidia 3D Vision, 3D Ready HDTVs, micro-polarizer 3D LCD (passive 3D) as well as anaglyph red/cyan glasses. There is a trial version of the software available, so you can download and try it if you are interested…
Today Microsoft has officially released Windows 8 Consumer Preview version of their multi-platform upcoming operating system that will be able to work not only on traditional x86-based platforms, but also on mobile devices. Have in mind that this is a pre-release operating system or something like a beta software and you may have issues with it should you decide to try it out, do not try replacing your current operating system with this one, you have to install it separately just to test it out and not over your existing Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7. There may be some issues with no drivers available for some of your hardware, although drivers from Windows 7 might also work, the same goes for the video drivers as well, although the new Windows 8 will have a new driver model that will be required to support all the new features, including native stereoscopic 3D support.
Currently Nvidia has not yet made available any beta drivers intended to be used with the just released Windows 8 Consumer Preview, what they recommend however is to install the R295.73 display drivers for Windows 7/Windows Vista on Windows 8, they should work, but again you may not get all the features available with them. On the other hand AMD has just released AMD Catalyst Drivers for Windows 8 Consumer Preview that you can download and install. And although these beta drivers from AMD are supposed to offer Full WDDM 1.2 support, including the native stereo 3D support, they are not compatible with the latest generation of AMD Radeon HD 7900 Series, and AMD Radeon HD 7700 Series video cards, but only with the older models.
Feel free to download and try the new Windows 8 Consumer Preview version and to report how well it works for you and on what hardware, and also if you’ve tried playing in stereo 3D mode on your stereoscopic 3D-capable system. I’m already downloading it and am eager to check out the Native Stereo 3D support with the AMD Catalyst Driver 8.93.7 RC10 while waiting fro Nvidia to have a WDDM 1.2 beta driver released to also try it out.