Today in Tech News Digest, new Nintendo consoles, new Russian Internet laws, cable TV bundles are a waste of time, Nintendo discriminates against gay relationships, Peekster bridges the gap, and a reminder for us all to Look Up.
Nintendo Eyeing Emerging Markets
Nintendo reveals new strategy to lose money in completely different ways
— Lowta? (@lowtax) May 8, 2014
On the back of yet another poor financial showing [PDF link], Nintendo is targeting emerging markets. And the Japanese company is planning on releasing new hardware to these markets, rather than simply repackaging its existing consoles including the Wii, Wii U, and 3DS.
Nintendo ended up making a loss of ¥46.4 billion ($457 million) in 2013, the third consecutive year the company has been in the red. Total sales of the Wii U currently stand at 6.17 million, meaning the PlayStation 4 from Sony has already overtaken the Wii U despite being released a year later.
The company expects to make a profit in 2014, and it’s targeting emerging markets in order to do so. Promising new hardware, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata said, “We want to make new things, with new thinking rather than a cheaper version of what we currently have. The product and price balance must be made from scratch.”
China is the obvious market to target, with Microsoft having already revealed plans to launch the Xbox One in the country in September. Only time will tell whether such a move will be enough to change the fortunes of Nintendo, but it seems, for now at least, the company’s traditional markets have lost interest in its products.
Russia Introduces “Bloggers Law”
— Sarah Dougherty (@sm_doug) May 8, 2014
Russia is currently embarking on an Internet crackdown rivalling that of China. According to The New York Times, the latest measure is the “bloggers law,” which treats any website getting more than 3,000 visitors a day as a legitimate media outlet and requires them to only post accurate information.
This puts an end to anonymous posting and will likely lower the chances of critical stories being written about public figures. In order to enforce the rules, websites have to keep records for the previous six months of output.
This new law comes just a couple of weeks after President Vladimir Putin stated on national television, “You know that it all began initially, when the Internet first appeared, as a special C.I.A. project,” before suggesting “special services are still at the center of things.”
Cable TV Bundles Are A Waste Of Time
Girl… You must be a Cable Television Provider because you’re the whole bundle package. #bestPickupLines
— Brian Reynolds (@IBReynolds) May 4, 2014
We all know cable TV bundles are a rip-off, but we now have proof thanks to Nielsen. The media research company claims that the average cable television customer receives 189.1 channels but only views 17.5 of them. The number of channels received has increased year-on-year, being just 129.3 in 2008, but the number of channels viewed has remained constant throughout.
This is the reason so many people are cutting the cord in order to watch streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu. And until the cable companies stop forcing people to pay for crap they don’t want to watch this trend will continue.
Nintendo Rejects Gay Relationships
Nintendo has rejected calls to allow gay relationships in its 3DS game Tomodachi Life. The game, which sees players using their Miis to enjoy a virtual world, only allows characters to get married and have kids if they’re with someone of the opposite gender.
Nintendo told the Associated Press, “The relationship options in the game represent a playful alternate world rather than a real-life simulation. We hope that all of our fans will see that ‘Tomodachi Life’ was intended to be a whimsical and quirky game, and that we were absolutely not trying to provide social commentary.”
Gay marriage isn’t legal in Japan, which may explain why Nintendo didn’t think discrimination of this nature would be a problem. But it clearly is in 2014 for a company that markets its products worldwide.
Peekster Brings Physical News To Digital
Peekster is a new iPhone app that bridges the gap between physical and digital media. If you’re reading a newspaper or magazine and want to share it online, you simply scan the headline into Peekster, which finds that same article, or articles related to it, on the Web.
A Reminder To Look Up Occasionally
The video has rather ironically gone viral, which goes against its very nature, but hopefully five minutes of watching this video will lead to a lifetime of looking up rather than down. Or is that just wishful thinking?
Tech News Digest… Breaking News Into Bite-Sized Chunks.
Image Credit: Rob DiCaterino via Flickr