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    Thursday, November 8, 2012

    Reuter site - Sony PlayStation certificate sparks talk China may lift console ban

    This article was sent to you from bombastic4000@yahoo.com, who uses Reuters Mobile Site to get news and information on the go. To access Reuters on your mobile phone, go to:
    http://mobile.reuters.com/article/technologyNews/idUSBRE8A60RH20121107

    Sony PlayStation certificate sparks talk China may lift console ban

    Wed, Nov 07 02:02 AM EST

    By Tim Kelly and Melanie Lee

    TOKYO/SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Sony Corp's PlayStation 3 has received a certification of quality from a Chinese safety standards body, sparking speculation that China will end a decade-old ban on home game consoles.

    China has banned video game consoles since 2000, citing a need to protect the well-being of its young people. Some analysts cautioned against reading too much into Sony's new certificate, noting the organization that gave it has no regulatory authority.

    "The Ministry of Culture has the regulatory authority over the console segment and is the sole organization that can revoke the ban," said Lisa Cosmas Hanson, managing partner of U.S.-based video games consultancy Niko Partners.

    The China Quality Certification Centre website showed two models of the PlayStation 3, labeled "computer entertainment system" received approval this July. All products must pass the safety standard before they can be sold to Chinese consumers.

    Sony confirmed that it had received certification but remained tightlipped about whether this heralded an imminent entry for the PlayStation into the world's second-largest economy or whether the company needed further certificates.

    "This does not mean that we have officially decided to enter Chinese market," Sony spokeswoman Mai Hora said.

    "We recognize that China is a promising market so we will continuously study the possibility."

    Representatives for China's Ministry of Culture could not be reached for comment.

    But there has also been some precedent that China authorities are taking a less hard-line attitude towards game consoles.

    This year Lenovo Group launched Eedoo CT510, a motion sensing device that plays games similar in concept to Microsoft's Kinect extension for the Xbox game console, by touting by Eedoo as an "exercise and entertainment machine".

    Although video game consoles are banned in China, online gaming and games on mobile devices are deeply entrenched -- limiting the potential upside for Sony and rival game machine makers like Microsoft Corp and Nintendo Co Ltd.

    "It obviously has a huge population, but gamers in China have different consumption habits," said Piers Harding-Rolls, senior games analyst at IHS Screen Digest in London.

    "A lot of established gamers will use non-dedicated devices they have used over many years."

    Game machine makers would also have to find ways to ensure that piracy did not cut into their income from games software and other content, Harding-Rolls added.

    (Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

    Reuter site - RIM's BlackBerry 10 platform wins coveted U.S. security clearance

    This article was sent to you from bombastic4000@yahoo.com, who uses Reuters Mobile Site to get news and information on the go. To access Reuters on your mobile phone, go to:
    http://mobile.reuters.com/article/technologyNews/idUSBRE8A707F20121108

    RIM's BlackBerry 10 platform wins coveted U.S. security clearance

    Thu, Nov 08 00:24 AM EST

    TORONTO (Reuters) - Research In Motion Ltd said on Thursday it has won a much-coveted U.S. government security clearance for its yet-to-be launched platform for BlackBerry 10 devices that are expected to hit store shelves in the first quarter of 2013.

    The company said its BlackBerry 10 platform has received the FIPS 140-2 certification, which would allow government agencies to deploy the devices, along with the new enterprise management platform to run the devices, as soon as the new smartphones are launched.

    RIM, a one-time pioneer in the smartphone industry, has seen its fortunes fade in recent years as nimbler rivals such as Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co have taken the game away from RIM with faster and snazzier devices. RIM's fate now depends almost entirely on the long-awaited line of so-called BB 10 devices.

    Last month, RIM said it had begun carrier tests on the new line of devices, which the company hopes will help it regain some of the market share it has ceded to the likes of Apple's iPhone and a slew of other devices that run on Google Inc's Android operating system.

    The Waterloo, Ontario-based company said this is the first time BlackBerry products have been FIPS certified ahead of launch.

    "Achieving FIPS certification for an entirely new platform in a very short period of time, and before launch, is quite remarkable," RIM's head of security certifications, David MacFarlane, said in a statement.

    FIPS certification, which is given by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, is one of the minimum criteria that is required for products used by U.S. government agencies and regulated industries that collect, store, transfer, share and disseminate sensitive information.

    The stamp of approval gives confidence to security-conscious organizations - including some of RIM's top clients like U.S. and Canadian government agencies - that the data stored on smartphones running BlackBerry 10 can be properly secured and encrypted.

    RIM promises that BlackBerry 10 will deliver a better user experience, along with the ability to separately manage both one's corporate and personal data on the same device.

    (Reporting by Euan Rocha; Editing by Chris Gallagher)

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