2015 is here and so are my random geek news predictions! Will I hit the mark? Or will I fall flat on my face? Only time will tell! On December 31 I’ll revisit my predictions to see how well my crystal ball served me.
Apple Puts the HDTV Rumor to Rest:
For the past few years Apple fans and general geeks have been certain the company would put out their own HDTV. If any company could create a beautiful and functional HDTV, it was Apple. This year, I predict that Apple finally puts this rumor to rest. They’ll announce they have no plans to manufacture an HDTV now, or any time in the near future. With profit margins so very low on HDTVs the hardware maker just doesn’t see the venture as profitable. After all, the Apple Watch is nearly upon consumers, and it should keep them engaged for a while.
More Hacks and DDoSes:
Distributed Denial of Service attacks are nothing new. However, 2014 brought a large increase in the number of them, and the services they targeted. Notably, Xbox Live and PlayStation Network were down for all of Christmas Day, and were hit earlier in the month as well. Just a few days ago Crunchyroll suffered a DDoS attack and was down for about a day. I’m almost certain groups like Lizard Squad will continue to disrupt the enjoyment of geeks and other fans just for the fun of it well into 2015. To make matters worse, we’ll see even more hacks of high profile companies and retailers. Get ready to purchase your identity theft protection insurance, if you already haven’t.
The PS3 and 360 are Slowly Put out to Pasture:
The current generation of consoles has entered their second year, and this holiday season gave us a few surprises. First, no one was surprised to see Microsoft uncouple the Xbox One from Kinect, and to slash the price of the console giving it parity with the PlayStation 4. However, the fact that the Xbox One could go as low as $329 with two games included was a surprise. It took years for the previous generation of consoles to see steep price cuts. Given how well games are selling and all the remasters, I predict 2015 is the last year we see any major releases on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. By the start of 2016 the only new releases these consoles will see are shovelware, indie games, and oddities from small Japanese developers.
The Phablet Binds Us All:
Remember when the Samsung Galaxy Note first debuted in North America? It was mocked for its sheer size. It was too big to be a phone and slightly too small to be a tablet, thus the term “phablet” was born. A few years later pre-orders of the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 outpaced the Galaxy S5. Furthermore, Apple introduced its own phablet in the form of the iPhone 6 Plus, and Google followed suit with the large Nexus 6. I predict 5-inch phones will be squeezed out by phablets. Fans of smaller 4 and 5-inch phones will no longer be able to rely on manufacturers’ flagship phones, and will have settle for less popular models.
Bleach Makes a Return to the Animated Medium:
Anyone who’s remotely keeping an eye on Bleach knows the manga is in its final story arc. In fact, Tite Kubo expects to finish up the series sometime this year. The time for a new animated series in a similar vein to Inuyasha: The Final Act seems like a no brainer. The rumors are swirling that a new series might make it to Japanese television this year. I predict a new Bleach anime is announced before the manga ends, will closely follow the story (I.e. no fillers), and will be animated by a studio other than Pierrot.
Sailor Moon Crystal pushes into 2016:
Sailor Moon Crystal was supposed to be the triumphant return of Sailor Moon that closely followed the original manga. What fans and curious viewers actually got was a low budget mess that released every other week. The quality of the animation can be over looked by some, but the slow release schedule is really hurting Sailor Moon Crystal. At times, three weeks can pass between episodes as fans wonder where Toei Animation went wrong. At this point I’m almost expecting Toei to further screw up, and instead of wrapping up in 2015 Sailor Moon Crystal’s first season will drift into 2016. At least hardcore fans have an affordable re-release of the original series on DVD and Blu-ray.