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Updated: New sound module

Mon Jun 18, 2001 - 12:00 AM EDT - By James Hromadka

Beat PlusOne of these days I'm going to have to learn Japanese. According to this ZDNet Japan article, Hagiwara Sys-Com is working on the Beat Plus Springboard™ module for the Handspring Visor. The article is in Japanese, but VisorCentral reader Wataru Ono translated it for us:
Early in July 2001, Hagiwara Sys-Com will place on the market the "Beat Plus" Springboard™ module for the Handspring Visor. The product uses a Yamaha FM & PCM sound chip; compatible software, with this module inserted into the springboard slot of a Visor, can produce powerful sound through it. An alarm clock application and two shooting games - " Zap! 2000 " and " Zap! 2016 " - will be included in the module packege as examples of compatible software. The API of the sound device will be disclosed for developers as a way of promoting the development of applications which support the module.
I also received an email from Astraware that Zap!2000/2016 will indeed come with the module. The game will be the fully registered version when the Beat Plus is inserted. This will be a special version of the game that has 8-bit .wav effects and some multi-channel MIDI music that replaces the beeps from the original game.

Pretty nifty! Users have been clammoring for improved audio in the Visor, and soon we will have it. I hope that games like the Liberty GameBoy emulator adds compatibility for the Beat Plus. Maybe I'll even let my Visor replace my ten year old alarm clock, as I seem to always fall prey to having the alarm volume too low or forgetting to turn it on. Thanks to Hsin-Pai Hsueh for the initial news.


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