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Writer's Note: Fighting on the Home front
by Linford Butler
It's been a little quiet on the Home front recently, but PSN director Eric Lempel has recently confirmed that the autumn release will be a fully-fledged service, rather than a work-in-progress.

During the last week's mishaps concerning the 2.40 update - which Sony's software engineers have ironed out with a smaller update - Lempel has claimed that Sony's social gaming experience, Home, is on track and will be non-beta when released later this year.

This contradics PSN's Susan Panico, who stated in a previous interview that Home's release would be managed along the same lines as Google's GMail service, where an open beta service is provided and refined over time. However, speaking to games site Next-Gen, Lempel said that this 'slow-release' may not be the case.

“The Home open beta is still on schedule for release later this fall," Lempel stated. "If you think about Gmail and Susan’s reference, Gmail when it launched in beta was afully functional email service. I personally was using it and it offered everything you’d expect, but was in beta just to say that there’s more to come and maybe it’s not fully polished.

“The reason we’ve been delaying Home is so that we can deliver a high quality service that the users will enjoy. Even though it will be in beta, it will be a fair representation of what the service can be and its potential, so it won’t be a 0.5 release, it will be a fully robust service.”

Lempel also spoke of Sony's planned movie-on-demand service, saying: “I don’t have any more specifics right now, but it will go live in the US this summer and I think it will offer consumers everything they’re looking for from us. It will offer everything they expect from us and probably a little bit more.”

This latest news seems promising, but after previous delays I won't hold my breath. More information on Home it comes.


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- Linford Butler

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