An Article in the New York Times today talks about how the Nintendo Wii has outplaced sales of the Sony Playstation 3, and Sony is actually losing money on the Playstation 3, waiting to make most of their money in game sales. I did not find this the slightest bit surprising.
We finally got a Wii a few weeks ago. It has totally changed evening entertainment in the household. It used to be that the kids would go upstairs to play the Playstation 2 after dinner as entertainment, while my husband and I stayed downstairs, talking, watching a little TV, or doing work. Now, all of us are in the family room, playing Wii Sports and other games, interacting much more. Our TV time has gone done precipitously, and we are having more fun together. The passive video game experience is now interactive, and perfect on cold winter days, when we are all trapped indoors.
Douglas Adams said in a series he did for BBC Radio that the reason why the internet was popular and growing, was the level of interactivity it provided. He postulated that someday soon, (This was back in 2000) TV would become interactive. This has started to happen in small ways with the voting and texting opportunities offered on so many “reality” shows, but really happens on the new internet serialized TV shows, such as Ze Frank and others. (For some of the best internet TV shows, check out Network2. Tv no longer has to be a passive experience, but begs for conversation and interactivity with a community beyond those in our household.
Where is this headed? I’m not sure we all have a good grasp on this yet, but I do know that interactivity and community is where I would put my money any day of the week.