GDC09: Introducing the Zeebo, Tectoy's 3G console venture

With another GDC already underway, a new contender has announced plans to jump into the console market ... well, sort of. Enter Tectoy and its 3D network-based console, the Zeebo, which relies purely on downloadable games (from the grave, the Phantom says, "Sup?"). The Zeebo will reportedly launch in Brazil this July and then in other similar markets in the following months.

At launch, the console will reportedly come preloaded with the mobile games Quake, Evil Prey and Action Hero 3D. Before any of us could cry foul, the manufacturers have said the Zeebo isn't meant to compete with the Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360 or the PlayStation 3. The console will have a constant, free-of-charge connection to a 3G network courtesy of Tectoy's partner, Claro, one of the largest cellular providers in the Americas. According to the console's specs revealed at Engadget, the system will focus less on power and more on providing content to developing and emerging regions -- specifically through downloadable channels to combat rampant piracy.

Capcom, EA Mobile, Namco Networks, PopCap Games and THQ have already confirmed support for the emerging console. Games for Tectoy's Zeebo will range in price from 7 to 30BRL (about $7 to $13) with the console priced at 599BRL (about $264) -- a bargain compared to prices of current generation consoles in the target markets.