Metrowerks signs Sony software deal

Danyll Wills

One of the world leaders in software development tools, Metrowerks, has signed an agreement with Sony Computer Entertainment to provide tools for software development on Sony's PlayStation.

Metrowerks is best known for its Codewarrior series of C, C++ and Java development tools for the Macintosh. It recently ported to Microsoft's Windows environment.

Metrowerks has also signed a deal with Microsoft to port ActiveX to the Macintosh platform.

The PlayStation specialises in high-speed graphics-oriented game software.

The agreement marks one of the first times a game machine maker has allowed software development to move on to more popular computer systems.

Brian Hu, managing director of DBZ, a Hong Kong interactive media consultancy, said: 'I think it represents a chance for independent software developers to create interesting titles.' Mr Hu said it had been difficult to develop software for such platforms because of their closed nature.

He said that by making it easier for anyone with a Macintosh or a Windows machine to write software for the PlayStation, the amount of software available could rapidly increase.

'I think Sony is looking for more sources of content,' he said.

The CodeWarrior software development environment for the PlayStation includes CodeWarrior IDE, a new MIPS compiler, ELF linker and PlayStation remote debugger, as well as conversion tools and drivers.

CodeWarrior will support development with the DTL-H2000 ISA and DTL-H2500 PCI development boards from Sony.