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Sony is tipped to launch a TV recording tuner for its popular PS3 games console. The tuner will allow the recording and playback of digital TV. The announcement due at the Leipzig games show, in Germany will also see the company announce a major expansion of the PS3 consoles’ hard drive to accomodate the recording of content.

In Australia the company is believed to have had talks with IceTV, which is now able to offer a full PSG service for the PS3. US and European owners of the Sony games console and the popular PSP will also have access to a new Sony content website. The move could force Microsoft to roll out a full version of their media center software for the Xbox 360.

Nintendo and Microsoft will push titles like Super Mario Galaxy and Halo 3. Games on display at the show will include Pro Evolution Soccer 2008, Crysis, Warhammer Online and the new expansion pack for World of Warcraft, The Lich King.

Multimedia functionality

Sony is also expected to give more details of a video chat and instant messaging system for the PSP, developed in conjunction with BT in the UK. Sony will be hoping that the new multimedia functionality for its PlayStation 3 and PSP consoles will make it more attractive to both gamers and non-gamers.

Both machines lag behind sales of rival devices from Nintendo and Microsoft, such as the Wii, DS handheld console and Xbox 360.

Sony said it aimed to increase shipments of the PS3 to 11 million units by 2008. Unlike other major games conferences, Leipzig is open to the public and 200,000 gamers are expected to attend the four-day event to get their hands on the latest titles.

“This year we are expecting over 9,000 trade visitors and some 2,800 journalists from over 35 countries,” said Josef Rahmen, managing director of the Leipziger Messe, in a statement.

The industry has gone on a charm offensive in recent years to improve the profile of games in Germany, which has a rigorous ratings and regulatory system.

The country is the third-biggest market for video games in Europe, behind the UK and France, with PC titles dominating the market.

 

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