Trends in Japan > Pop Culture > Previewing The Future of Technology
Crowds Flock to CoFesta Events
(November 13, 2007)

Tokyo Game Show 2007. (C)2002-2007 CESA / Nikkei Business Publications, Inc.


Tokyo Game Show 2007. (C)2002-2007 CESA / Nikkei Business Publications, Inc.

The Japan International Contents Festival (CoFesta), which brings together a host of events showcasing Japan's content industry, kicked off with its opening ceremony on September 19. The most popular of the festival's events were the Tokyo Game Show 2007, the largest video game exposition in the world, and the Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies (CEATEC) Japan 2007, focusing on a broad array of digital electronics. Both events were held at the Makuhari Messe exhibition center in Chiba and attracted around 200,000 visitors.

Game Consoles Vie for Superiority
The first of the official CoFesta events, the Tokyo Game Show, lasted for four days for the first time in its history, pulling in record numbers of both vendors and visitors. This illustrates the growing status of the video game industry as a major entertainment sector.

The three main contenders in the global game console market each made a splash at the show. Microsoft exhibited its established Xbox 360 console, while Sony Computer Entertainment displayed its impressive software catalog for the PlayStation 3 and announced the release of new PlayStation Portable handheld models. Nintendo presented its lineup of new software for the Nintendo DS portable console and revealed plans to increase production of the Wii console, which has achieved explosive sales the world over. Fans waited in perpetually long lines to visit the booths for the main software attractions: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots for the PS3, Professor Layton and Pandora's Box for the DS, and Halo 3 for the Xbox 360. Some booths recorded waiting times of more than three hours, casting away any doubt that the next-generation console wars have died down.

A number of other international conferences were held at around the same time as TGS, including DiGRA 2007 (September 24-28), the meeting of the worldwide digital games researchers association, and CEDEC 2007 (September 26-28), attended by those involved on the front line of video game development. Both conferences were held at the University of Tokyo and served to further raise the profile of the gaming world.


CEATEC JAPAN 2007. (C)2007 Japan Echo Inc.


Organic Electroluminescence Television. (C)2007 Japan Echo Inc.

Tomorrow’s Technology Today
With the TGS fervor still running high, the Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies (CEATEC) Japan 2007 was held in the same venue on October 2-6, presenting the latest in IT and electronics technology and products. CEATEC Japan 2007 was chosen as an official CoFesta event not only to present content but also to showcase to overseas markets the high level of Japanese technology used to transmit this content.

The exhibition was buzzing with discussion over whether the next-generation format of DVDs should be Blu-ray or High-Definition DVD, but what really took center stage was the competition between manufacturers to develop the ultimate ultra-slim television. Sony caused a stir when it announced that its Organic Electroluminescence Televisions, measuring a mere three millimeters thick, would go on sale before the end of the year. Such advances raise the prospect of a world in which home electronics like big-screen TVs can be folded up and carried around.

Visitors to CEATEC Japan 2007 came away optimistic that inventions once found only in the realm of cartoons and comics are gradually making their way into the real world.

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Copyright (C)2007 Web Japan. Edited by Japan Echo Inc. based on domestic Japanese news sources. Articles presented here are offered for reference purposes and do not necessarily represent the policy or views of the Japanese Government.