Sony to hook PSX console users up with TV schedules via GEMSTAR system; CDDB compatibility likely.
In a recently-published interview, Kenji Matsuoka, the Sony worker who led PSX development, talked about the new console's genesis. He also revealed a new corporate partnership, and speculated on future software-based upgrades for the PSX. Matsuoka revealed that the PSX that hits the stores in Japan next month will have one small difference from the prototypes displayed at CEATEC: a G-GUIDE logo on the front panel. G-GUIDE is the Japanese name for the electric programming guide that Sony has selected for the PSX. Produced by U.S. company Gemstar, the publisher of TV Guide, G-GUIDE will broadcast updated information to PSX consoles four times per day. Although Gemstar also offers this information as a download service, Sony decided to stick with broadcast delivery in the expectation that some PSX buyers would not have their consoles hooked up to a network.
Gemstar also offers this electric programming guide in the U.S. and Europe; in those markets it is branded as TV Guide On Screen and Guide Plus+ respectively. Although there has been no announcement to date, it seems likely that the Sony/Gemstar partnership will extend to these markets when PSX sales start there. Matsuoka also spoke about the genesis of the PSX, and the reason why Sony decided to use the PS2 processor and graphics engine in its newest console. Matsuoka was involved with creating the Blu-ray Disc before being given charge of the PSX project, so his first inclination was to approach the PSX as an AV device rather than a gaming platform, and there was no internal mandate to use PS2 technology. However, according to Matsuoka, his team's goal was to create "a GUI that would be easy to understand even for people that barely look at the manual," and they decided that the PS2 processor was the best tool for this.
News source: GameSpot