The future of PS3 firmware

Techy Sony bigwigs speak.

Sony technical bigwigs Kawanishi and Kanehide believe there's room for 30 to 40 per cent more improvement in the PS3 as an audio-visual piece of kit via future firmware updates.

The pair also remained confident that this wouldn't have an adverse effect on fan noise, even hinting at the possibility of a fan-less model somewhere down the line - similar to the PS2.

"So far, we are not worried too much since we have plenty of processing power left even at peak usage," AV development boss Kanehide told AV Watch.

Platform development boss Kawanishi agreed: "Nothing yet comes close to the load that Folding@Home applies. And I can see the possibility of a fan-less PS3 in the future, just like there was for the PS2."

The most recent firmware update for PS3 was version 1.8, which added support for PS1 and PS2 games to be upscaled to full 1080p. DVD playback at the same resolution was also featured, but only with an HDMI-compatible telly.

It also introduced remote-play, allowing you to control your PS3 with your PSP - providing you left your console on, had an Internet connection handy, and the most recent firmware for your handheld.

And according to Kawanishi, the technology to control games using your PSP is already available - it's more a case of if the developer wants to include it. He also mused that turning your PS3 on using a PSP remotely could well be on the horizon.

But the pair concluded that the future of firmware updates would depend on what you lot wanted. If you were keen to see the PS3 as a music-player, then so be it; if you want to see more Blu-Ray playback support, then that's fine. Listening to the community is a key area for them.

"The scary thing about the PS3 is that we can continue to add updates as long as there is space on the HDD," concluded Kawanishi. "We won't stop though, since adding new functionality is a lot of fun. We really enjoy getting feedback from the customers, and finding things we really hadn't thought of."

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