The week in gadgets

12 Dec 2011

The HP TouchPad

A look at gadget happenings, as HP makes webOS open source, classic SNES RPG Chrono Trigger arrives on the iPhone, and US consumers buy 1.7m Xbox 360s during November.

HP to make webOS open source

HP will make its webOS mobile operating system available as open source in the hopes it will become just as popular as Android.

According to Reuters, HP CEO Meg Whitman said the mobile OS will be available under an open-source licensing agreement, though the terms of the agreement have not been finalised.

She said the company will solicit ideas from developers before completing the agreement and that HP wants to avoid fragmentation Android has suffered from.

WebOS’ fate has been called into question after HP’s previous CEO Leo Apotheker said the company would get rid of its PC and webOS businesses. The move shocked investors, which led to Whitman replacing Apotheker as CEO.

She recently announced that HP would not quit the PC business. Since then, the company has been considering the future of webOS, which included possibly selling it off or shutting it down.

SNES RPG Chrono Trigger arrives on iPhone, iPod touch

Square Enix has released its classic Super Nintendo RPG Chrono Trigger on iPhone and iPod touch devices.

The critically acclaimed game, which lets players take control of Crono and his friends as they journey through time to prevent the world from ending, now includes touchscreen controls along with two additional areas from the Nintendo DS remake of the RPG.

The game is available now on the iTunes App Store for €7.99, with an Android version in the works.

1.7m Xbox 360s sold in November, thanks to Black Friday

The Xbox 360 experienced a strong start in the run up to Christmas, as 1.7m units sold in the US during November.

According to Microsoft, NPD figures show that the Xbox 360 now holds 49pc of the current-generation console market. Sales for the console grew 23pc year over year since November 2010.

Total retail spending on the Xbox 360 platform – which includes consoles, games and accessories – reached US$1.4bn in the US.

The Black Friday sales frenzy was credited as a “significant part” of the console’s success that month, with more than 800,000 consoles sold within a period of 24 hours.

The sales figures are impressive, considering the Xbox 360 is now six years old. Its successor could see a release between 2013 and 2015.

‘Black Friday’ is the day after Thanksgiving Day in the United States, when most retailers offer promotional sales to kick off the Christmas shopping season.

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