The Strange (and Rare) Videogame Pics Page

The (now defunct ?) European company Katz Media is the only one (besides Bandai) that supported the ill-fated Pippin the first (and only, for now...) Apple attempt to enter the multimedia/videogame systems market.

Note the beautiful design of the joypad with built-in trackball!

The Katz Media Pippin is intended only for developers (even if they talk about a customer version in the text below...). The customer version was available only from Bandai. Katz Media had initially intentions to market Pippin technology in time for Xmas '96, then they shift launch date to March 1997: plans were almost ready for the following markets: France, Germany and UK. Actually the Norwegian company is still supporting developers but seems to have not a clear plan for the future. The recent dismissal of the Pippin project by Apple wasn't of help...

At the end of 1999 Katz Media web sites weren't reachable any more! I suppose the company died a slow death because of the failure of the Pippin system they tried to support until too late! Some sources said that anyway at least 40000 units were sold by Katz all around Europe. It would be interesting to know if all those units were sold to developers...

All images on this page are copyright of Katz Media.

Here is a description of the Pippin technology made by Katz Media:

The PIPPIN from Katz Media

Turn your TV into a family Multimedia and Internet centre

What is the Pippin?

About the size of a CD player, the Pippin plugs directly into the TV set. Its functions are controlled by a hand held remote. Like a CD player it can play music CDs, but like a computer it can also run CD-ROM titles. It allows you to connect your TV to the Internet to surf the World Wide Web or send electronic mail messages to friends and family around the world.

Shopping, Finance and Banking

Today more and more companies are offering their services via on-line connections. From shops that allow you to browse through cata-logues and buy products, to on-line financial services where you can check stock prices and make investments, to banks who'll allow you to do all your banking - even paying you bills - on-line. With a Pippin and a modem all these services are at your fingertips in your living room.

Based on Apple Computer's world famous easy-to-use technology, the Pippin from Katz Media is a whole new category of consumer device. It's not a computer - although it has many computer capabilities - and it's not a game station - although it can play hundreds of CD-ROM game titles. It's just what's been missing from the world of ever-complicated technology: a simple and inexpensive way for families to take advantage of the latest in Multimedia and the Internet. It's easier to use and lower priced than a traditional computer and fits into the home just where technology should - alongside the family TV, enabling the whole family to explore new worlds together.

Education, Cultural and Entertainment Titles

With its built-in CD-ROM drive, the Pippin allows your family to see and explore hundreds of educational titles. The Pippin can be an aid in learning math, science, histor y and reading. You can also explore art from the Louvre, understand Mozart, and learn to cook great cuisines from around the world. Your TV can now be a teacher rather than a babysitter. The Pippin will also entertain you - it can play hundreds of today's best CD-ROM based games.

Exploring the Internet

With its built-in Internet capabilities, the Pippin can turn your living room into a sophisticated communications centre. You can send electronic mail to anyone in the world connected to the Internet, explore the multitude of information on the World Wide Web, receive your own personalised on-line newspaper, follow your favourite sports team, and plan your next family vacation, all from the comfort of your living room. With all this capability at around half the price of a multimedia computer there's simply no reason to put off joining the multimedia revolution today. Call +33 (1) 46 10 94 94 today to find out more. Your family will thank you.

Pippin Specifications (from Katz Media online site)
Main Processor
PowerPC 603 RISC microprocessor, 66 MHz.
8MB combined system and video memory. Expandable to 14 MB using 2MB, 4MB 8MB expansion cards.
Flash Memory
128KB SRAM store/restore backup.
SCSI drive, eight speed.
Serial I/O
Two high speed serial ports, one of which is Geoport™ Ready.
PCI-compatible expansion slot.
Two ruggedised ADB (Apple Desktop Bus) inputs for ADB Keyboards, mice, controllers, etc. Will support up to four simultaneous players over ADB.
8-bit and 16-bit video support Support for NTSC and PAL: composite or S-video. Support for VGA (640x480) monitors Dual Frame Buffers for superior frame-to-frame animation.
Stereo 16-bit input/output, with sampling rates up to 44.1 KHz. Headphone output jack with volume control. Audio CD compatible.
Internal universal (switching) power supply, 220V.
By Apple Computer, Inc.

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