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So, does 2011 new consoles now prove that future consoles will be handheld?

So, here's a theory that no one seems to be thinking about, we've got our 'On Live' we've got our mobile phones, we've got our gaming laptops, we've got our tablets/iPads, and, soon we'll have our 3DS and PSP 2. Does this mean that the home consoles are dead because the normal '5 year' life span isn't taking place?

In this post, I will give the reasons why home consoles are 'dead', and why we'll never lose them.

There's no doubt in any of our minds that products on the market are becoming very close to the power of the consoles, for example, you can now play Xbox Live games on your mobile thanks to the new Windows 7 phones, you've got companies making older (and in cases such as RAGE) new games for phones. Your getting more powerful CPU's, GPUS, larger storage space, better battery life and more places you can link up to the net and download games. Internet prices are declining and speed is increasing, hardware is becoming far more regularly updated, operating systems are now including gaming features such as Gingerbread and IOS.

So, does this mean we'll have 'top-end' games in our pocket? Well with more devices, improved software, more Wi-fi spots, more people online and higher quality games and operating systems coming out since the last gen of hand held’s, there's no doubt in my mind that the 'next, next gen' (after the 3DS and PSP 2) will be on shelves a lot sooner than the last gen, to the next gen starting in just months thanks to the 3DS. I also believe that PC's hardware will continue to overshadow the next gen of home consoles in 3-5 years.

So what's going to happen?
Sony and Nintendo are going to put all their money in Handhelds, Microsoft will either follow suit, and bring out a portable console, or stick with PC's, the reason for this is the amount of time the consoles will lag behind. I do see Nintendo releasing a console, though.

Now, shoe on the other foot time the whole phone/tablets/laptops etc hit their sweet spot, the technology slows down and longer developed time's are required for better hardware and software. Sony and Microsoft wait 2-4 yrs to announce their next home consoles. The Wii 2 will come out first this time and be on par with the 360 at least, so while Nintendo are still behind, hardware wise, Sony and Microsoft will battel it out once again untill the breakthrough for handheld is invented and made available, or maybe something amazing will come along in the home entertainment market.

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Matthew942649d ago

No, the gap between consoles and handhelds are the same as they've always been.

Game Boy - NES
Game Boy Advance - SNES
DS/PSP - PS1/Bad quality ps2
3DS - Wii

theonlylolking2649d ago

If consoles like xbox and playstation become handheld then I am going to be dedicated to PC gaming.

hennessey862647d ago

I have no interest in handheld gaming

Trroy2649d ago (Edited 2649d ago )

Handheld CPUs and GPUs take all sorts of shortcuts to conserve battery power. They just aren't as fast, per cycle, as home console or PC processors, and they never will be. Batteries, also, haven't gotten much better in... well forever. Beating the power-to-weight ratio of the 150+ year old lead-acid battery still used in cars is pretty difficult.

Power, meaning electricity, will always be a serious problem for handheld devices. Electron loss increases, the smaller the manufacturing process -- that's why you see such scorching hot chips these days, despite the fact that they take up the same die area as their larger process predecessors. As tech improves via smaller circuits, the battery/heat/power problem just gets worse. While this is manageable with heatsinks, and bigger power supplies for desktops, no such solution is available for handheld devices.

All the media talk about the 3DS, etc., being as powerful as their console counterparts is bull. The games on them look decent because the screens are too tiny for the human eye to pick out pixel-sized details, not because they're powerful, relative to their console counterparts. The media just wants hits, and if you believe them, you're just setting yourself up for a big disappointment.

Kharhaz2648d ago

Not going to lie, that's a pretty retarded theory because handhelds simply can't, and never will be able to utilize the advantages that a console can. I'm sure everyone is just going to forget about their big screen HD TV, surround sound, and dedicated internet connection because handhelds are "the next big thing". Maybe you should start reading some books or do some actual research, because clearly you don't have the mental capacity to come up with a solid or interesting theory that makes sense.

bobokadof2648d ago

lol , prefect response!

frelyler2648d ago

I can't say I agree with the author of this article. However, I must remind Kharaz that the Wii outsold the competition for 3 or 4 years. This is a machine that cannot take advantage of HD technology aside from letterbox aspect. It has no surround sound and uses analog inputs. The Wii is basically a gamecube which came out almost ten years ago! Yet, people did latch onto the "next big thing" even when there were far superior products out there (technology wise, not games before people bite my head off). In a sense people did give up their HD and surround sound already. One must never underestimate the power of ignorance or stupidity. If the news media tells Americans that a product is better than it's competition (even if it is complete and utter bull) then they will buy into it and get it. Kharaz your last sentence is a little harsh, but I must remind you that your statement describes 80% of the population in America. It is sad, but true. So I disagree with the article, but it is completely possible for the authors theory to come true if the game companies and the media start heading in that direction. Sheeple man, most Americans are Sheeple.

Dac2u2647d ago

There are a couple poorly made assumptions in your post. First, to say that a handheld will never be able to utilize the advantages that a console can is just ignorant. Second, nobody will have to forget about their big screen HDTV, since it will be easy to hook a handheld up to the TV.

The PSP can already be hooked up to a TV very easily. I wouldn't be surprised if the PSP2 outputs 720p or even 1080p. Add a mini-HDMI connector and you've solved any issue with HD quality video and surround sound. Dedicate internet connection? I think you're confusing terms here, did you mean a hard-line, like CAT5? If so, do you really believe that it would be a problem to add that connection to a device? What's the likelihood of us still using CAT5 in 10-15 years and moving onto something smaller?

Now, the OP says it's likely to happen two generations from now, I'd say it's more likely in 3-4 generations. Here's why, there will be a time in the future where graphics completely plateau and a couple years later the GPU's will be small enough and cheap enough to fit into a handheld device. This is when handheld only consoles will be a reality, imo. I really think you need to do some research on where technology is going, before you bash someone else.

Kharhaz2647d ago (Edited 2647d ago )

You're accusing me of ignorance, when you yourself make even worse assumptions? First of all, hooking the PSP up to a TV is possible, however the output is a small box in the same resolution that the PSP uses, so no, it does not fully utilize your TV. As for PSP2 and "futuristic handhelds" you just sound like an ass by saying I made poor assumptions, while you compare "possibly" or "likely" enhancements of said futuristic handhelds to current generation technology such. Why don't you compare your fabricated handhelds to some new fabricated technology while you're at it? On a side note, it's nice to see that nobody even mentioned the commercialization implications to letting consoles die out, gaming didn't expand this much only to shrink for the sake of handhelds.

Get out of here with your crackpot theories, you don't know anything about technology because you based your entire argument and theory off of mostly blind assumptions and simply because "technology gets better". Oh really, Sherlock? Great job, but here's some real points as to why this theory is stupid, and what really holds handhelds back from ever becoming a console's replacement.

1) Fragile and hard to replace parts
- First of all, if handhelds are presumably going to replace consoles, let's look at this point. You can't fix anything yourself without voiding the warranty, parts likely to break by accident or simple wear and tear, such as the screen and controller parts, require a time consuming and expensive process to repair. I find the ease of this process or introduction of easily replaceable parts unlikely.

2) Bandwidth
- The bandwidth for HD gaming is barely there now, let alone for next-gen games. Online gaming is one of the most prominent aspects of any current generation console, and a handheld simple can't compete with unreliable wireless or online play limited to only a few players. I should not have to go into anymore detail on this point.

3) PC's too expensive to maintain
- Not for me at least, but there are reasons PC gaming is not as popular as console gaming, reasons I should not have to explain to somebody who claims they are knowledgeable about computers, gaming, and technology. PC's won't replace consoles, so why the hell would handhelds?

4) Heating Issues
- You say that handhelds will eventually have such similar capabilities to their console counterparts that consoles will become obsolete. Do you have any idea how much heat something that powerful creates? Yes, maybe you can have a handheld that powerful, maybe even in a few years, but cooling it is a different story completely. You all seem to thing that the problem is being able to make a small enough or strong enough chip, when that is hardly the issue in the first place. The idea behind a heatsink is that it HAS to be big, so unless someone comes up with a new form of passive cooling, we're about at the end of heat pipe technology.

I have more points I could list actually, but I think this is a enough to prove that you crackpots don't really know anything about the subject, and you base your theories simply off of the fact that technology is improving, without taking the time to understand how it is improving, or how these improvements could be applied. Maybe a 4th grader would have found what you two clowns had to say amusing, but I'm not even remotely impressed.

Do some research before I bash someone else? People like you and the OP usually don't even know what they're talking about, this is one such case, and I don't the patience to educate random people that can't take the time to educate themselves.

Dac2u2646d ago

Wow, you really have no clue, let me pick apart your "points." I didn't say the PSP fully utilizes a TV, I said it can be used on a TV and it would be a small step to add it in the future with mini-HDMI. Negating, your woes of not using HDTV and surround sound.

1. So, making it harder for people to gain access to the hardware in their system is a bad thing for the big three? Really? I would think they'd want less people "breaking" into their consoles. But, I'm just a crackpot, right?

2. Five years ago, Comcast's $50 Internet package was around 1-2Mbps, I'm can't remember exactly what it is now, but the last time I heard they had upped it to 12Mbps, I seem to be getting around 18-20 though. 10-15 years from now, FO will be as widespread as high speed Internet is now. Google has plans for a 1Gb FO line. Not to mention FiOS. How little foresight you have, if you think bandwidth is even a concern.

3. Imo, consoles have been slowly replacing PC's for the majority of gaming. I'll be honest, I have no idea what's going to happen to PC gaming, it could make a huge resurgence with Windows 8 or it could continue to slowly die out. But the fact remains that it's a big reason behind the growth of GPU tech. Which is why it hasn't been taken out completely by consoles. Your argument here is worthless, since there are far too many factors involved in why consoles haven't taken out PC's. And to liken handhelds to consoles in the same way is just a bad analogy.

4. Would you have said the same thing before they put near PS2 quality graphics in a handheld? I understand what you're saying about heatpipe tech being near the end of its lifecycle. However, this is mainly a problem if you're assuming they continue to use the same type of CPU's they've been using. There are many different technologies on the way; our current CPU dies still haven't hit their wall yet. So, they can still get a lot smaller. There are even new options coming out which will get us below the once thought of 22nm limit. The ITRS - is predicting we'll have 10-11nm CPU dies in 12 years. This is why I say it's not likely in two generations, but more likely to happen 3-4 gens from now(15-20 years). Moore's law is still in effect.

Commercial implications? You seriously don't think a company will cannibalize another product, even its own to break ahead of the competition? Are you really that naive? Buying more than one console per household, that's an incentive as well.

Well, after four awful "points" and one almost valid one, I'd love to see what else you have. I'm guessing you won't have much. Maybe, an argument about the trouble of adding controllers? But, I'd just mention how they already have bluetooth dongles the size of thumbtacks. Adding wireless controller support is simple.

The technology will be there in the future, even though I used the words likely and possible, the tech will be there. A single company just has to put them all together in one device.

HarryMonogenis2647d ago

"In this post, I will give the reasons why home consoles are 'dead', and why we'll never lose them."

Is the writer is trying to say "I will give reason why home consoles are dead AND reason why we'll never lose them" (still don't get the "never lose them part)?

Rowland2647d ago (Edited 2646d ago )

yes, it's a contradictory article I'm afraid - and the idea as a whole doesn't make any sense.

All consoles, hand helds, media devices, PC's etc have their own very successful niche in the market place and it's the enormous sales of current consoles since launch that is holding back the need for the next generation console.

The vast majority of gamers have a console and/or PC for home entertainment plus a handheld for when on the move - it's simply a case of device preference depending on age and maturity and this will be the case for as long as people play games.