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Sony Launches the Open Beta for PlayStation Home
Dear Friends,

The incredible paradigm shift from the web PAGE to the web SPACE continues. In fact, today it has taken an amazing leap forward with the worldwide introduction of "PlayStation® Home" for Sony PlayStation®3 users around the globe.

As you know, Barcelona Virtual was the first Spanish advertising agency to open offices in Second Life; now, two years later, our Island there attracts an average of 17,500 users every month. We have spent two full years honing our expertise in "Experiential Marketing" in 3D virtual worlds, and now the fruits of that investment can be seen.

To date, we have mounted successful promotions on our Second Life island for Banco Sabadell, Instituto de Empresa, Universal Pictures, Infoempleo (a Spanish online employment portal) and Sunny Delight, as well as with Sony itself.

We are currently in direct contact with Sony Computer Entertainment Europe in order to collaborate more closely with them in content development and marketing strategies for "Home".

Take a peek here at one of the earlier "trailers" of Home:

WELCOME HOME!

Below, we include a fragment of Sony's official press release .

* * *

Highly Anticipated Service Open For All PLAYSTATION 3 Users

Tokyo, Foster City, London, December 10, 2008 – Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCE) today announced that its highly anticipated PlayStation®Home Beta service for PLAYSTATION®3 (PS3™) will become available for all PS3 users around the world *1 on December 11, 2008. Following the successful completion of the closed beta service, PlayStation Home’s open beta service will continue to evolve with new features and functionality.

PlayStation Home is a ground-breaking 3D social gaming community available on PS3 that allows users to interact, communicate and share gaming experiences. By leveraging the power of PS3, PlayStation Home delivers overwhelming visual graphics and rich gaming social experiences only possible on the PS3 platform. Within PlayStation Home, users can create and customize their own unique avatars and explore the virtual community in real time where they can communicate freely through text or voice chat. PlayStation Home users will not only be able to enjoy variety of entertainment content such as mini-games, videos and special events along with their friends, but will also be able to create their own community by using the “Club*2” feature to create clubs with other PlayStation Home users who share the same interests. PlayStation Home also allows groups of users to launch directly into their favourite online games together from PlayStation Home.

PlayStation Home, available as a free download*3 starting December 11, will launch directly from the PlayStation Home icon on the PlayStation®Network column of XMB™ (XrossMediaBar) on PS3. Users will be able to experience basic features and services of PlayStation Home, free of charge*4. PlayStation Home will allow open interaction among users, business partners and SCE, and will evolve with additional features including dedicated game spaces, special events and exclusive themed items, to further enrich the entertainment experience on the PS3 platform.

PlayStation Home is truly a promising network community service on the PlayStation platform, made possible with the powerful combination of PS3's overwhelming computational power and PlayStation Network that covers many countries around the globe,” said Kazuo Hirai, President and Group CEO, SCE. “We are committed to providing PS3 users with exciting gaming experiences with PlayStation Home and together with our partners and users, expand the new world of interactive entertainment as we move forward.”

Read the entire press release...

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