NUON in the news: new games, players, and Broadband

The NUON(TM) experience could be gaining some steam in the coming months with the announcement of support from several sectors.

VM Labs’ NUON architecture is a technology that enables users to enjoy enhancements in home video entertainment products by utilizing an advanced media processor, allowing new feature sets as well as performance and playback capabilities . Like many new technologies, the first NUON enhanced DVD players released this year have met with tepid response, due either to mediocre implementation (to read our review of one of the first NUON DVD players Click Here) or lack of software. The potential is there, though, and whether it catches on or goes the way of ‘PlayTapes’ (anyone old enough to remember those?) we’ll see in the coming year, but in the meantime, in brief, here are several interesting announcements:

Motorola has announced that the company’s NUON-enhanced Streamaster 5000 will be one of the first advanced set-top boxes designed to enable service providers the capability to deliver high-quality audio and video, together with three-dimensional interactive content across a broadband pipeline into the living room. The Streamaster 5000 enables advanced consumer features such as digital-quality broadcast television, high-speed Web access, 3D games, video and music-on-demand, karaoke and online shopping. Several service providers, including Blockbuster Entertainment, Enron, Aliant Telecom of Canada and Australia’s TransACT Capital Communications Pty have separately announced their decision to deploy the NUON-enhanced Streamaster 5000 to deliver broadband interactive services to customers on two continents.


VM Labs today announced several upcoming NUON(TM) interactive software titles from Hasbro Interactive and Taito Corporation. Initial Hasbro Interactive NUON titles will include Monopoly, The Game Of Life and Breakout video games, all scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2001. Taito also has at least three NUON games planned, including RC De GO!, Bust-A-Move 4, and Space Invaders 2001 scheduled for release in the second and third quarters. Similar to NUON software now on shelves, all games currently in the works are anticipated to ship with an MSRP of $29.95.


A variety of NUON compatible peripherals and accessories are also now available from Hot Products Inc. . The ‘Warrior’ ($24.99 SRP) is a gamepad controller that offers all of the functions required to play games on a NUON enhanced DVD player. The ‘Stealth’ ($34.99 SRP) adds ergonomic advantages to game play including an integrated precision analog stick. An Extension Cable ($9.99 SRP) adds five feet to the length of any NUON controller, and HPI’s Port Replicator ($19.99 SRP) enables consumers to relocate their built-in NUON controller ports to other locations.

As well as:

Orient Power Multimedia, Ltd.…which supplies a wide range of video and audio consumer electronics products to the US and European markets both under the brand name Oritron…announced today that they have signed an agreement aimed at delivering NUON(TM) enhanced DVD players into key US and European markets throughout the year 2001 and beyond. The first Oritron branded NUON enhanced DVD player, the Oritron DVD900, is scheduled for shipment in mid 2001 with a target retail price below US$200.

It still remains to be seen whether NUON catches on as a viable enhancement for watching movies, but more support could keep the fires burning long enough for DVD developers to fully realize the technology’s potential…

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