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 > summer special 2000
For the year 2000

The Best Government Reformer
How Asia Is Governed
The Best Local Administrator
The Best Activist

The Best Dealmaker
The Best IPO
The Best Stock
The Best Advocate of Shareholder Rights
The Best Fund Manager
The Best Cost Cutter

The Best Airport
The Best Hotel Service
The Best Hotel Gym
The Best Store
The Best Food

In Tune with Nature
The Best Forest Preserve
The Best City Park
The Best Transport
The Best Green Test
The Best Marine Preserve
The Best Marine Park

The Hottest Video Game
The Hottest Gadget
The Hottest Portal
The Best Asian Websites

The Hottest Fad
The Hottest Toy
The Hottest TV Show
The Hottest Album
The Best Movie
The Best Short Film


Video Game | Gadget | Portal | Websites
The Hottest Gadget

There have been plenty of techie toys to get excited about in the past year. Sleek Palm V computers became executive must-haves, while kids downloaded music to portable MP3 music players and Japan went gaga for Web-enabled iMode cellphones. But one gadget generated a level of hysteria usually reserved for rock stars. On March 4, thousands of sore-thumbed gaming aficionados camped out overnight in Tokyo computer store doorways, jostling to be the first to own Sony's next-generation videogame console the PlayStation 2.

One weekend later, almost one million machines had been sold. The excitement can be attributed to the PS2's "Emotion Engine" — a chip 100 times more powerful than its predecessor's. But the PS2 is more than just a games machine. It also plays DVD movies (sales and rentals of DVDs in Japan have spiked 300% since the PS2 launched), and you can plug peripherals into it, just like a desktop computer. You could hook up a digital camera, for example, and edit your pictures on the TV.

More promising still, the PS2 can be connected to the Internet. Sony is set to launch a broadband Internet service in 2001, opening the way for multiplayer gaming and online services such as shopping and entertainment. But don't start sleeping in doorways yet. The PS2 is slated for release in the U.S. and Europe this fall, but a firm date for its Asia-wide debut has yet to be announced.

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