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PS3 to show 3D movies with new software

Published Sep 17, 2010

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Chiba, Japan - Sony's PlayStation 3 game console will work as a Blu-ray disc player for 3D movies and music videos, not just 3D games, with a software update download starting September 21.

The free-of-charge update for movies and other content had been promised for later this year. But the date is being moved up to ride on the momentum of 3D popularity, Sony executive Hiroshi Kawano said at the Tokyo Game Show on Thursday.

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The annual event in this Tokyo suburb features game machines and the latest offerings from game-software makers. It opens over the weekend for the public. A preview event was held Thursday for reporters and business officials.

"The appeal and impact of games will be definitely enhanced with 3D technology," Kawano said during a two-hour presentation at the Sony booth.

The 3D capabilities for the PlayStation 3 will not be as thorough as they are for 3D Blu-ray disc players. The game machine will have no problem playing 3-D movies, but some parts of the menu and other minor portions of some DVDs will play only in 2D, Sony said.

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Sony also showed a motion-controller wand for the PlayStation 3 called Move, similar to the one already on sale from rival Nintendo's Wii. Sony said Move will go on sale September 19 in the US and October 21 in Japan.

A 5 980 yen (about R500) "starter kit" for the Move comes with software called "Beat Sketch!" which allows people to make computer-graphic paintings on the TV screen using the motion-controller stick.

A similar kit for the US, with a different game, costs $99.99, and the wand by itself costs $49.99.

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Move is cheaper than Microsoft's Kinect, which sells for $150 in the US and 14 800 yen in Japan.

Kinect is a system to control gaming motion without a wand. It doesn't require the player to push any buttons, and the game is controlled by the player's movements.

The PlayStation 3 already plays 3D games with an upgrade that could be done over the Internet earlier this year.

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Some 38 million of the PlayStation 3 videogame machines have been sold globally so far, according to Sony Computer Entertainment, the Japanese electronics and entertainment company's gaming division. - Sapa-AP

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