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Sony PlayStation (Games) The Almighty Buck

Sony's Harrison In No Rush to Lower PS3 Price 107

Posted by Zonk
from the out-of-reach dept.
njkid1 passed on a link to a GameDaily interview they conducted at DICE with Phil Harrison, SCE WorldWide Studios President. Harrison stays mostly positive throughout the article, pointing out that the availability of consoles is a sign of a healthy supply chain. He denigrates rumble in controllers as a 'last generation' feature, and specifically discusses the company's decision-making process for lowering prices: "The PS3 technology, as with any of our platforms, starts off life at a high price and then we engineer cost out of it. And that process is an investment that you make to combine chips into a single chip or to reduce components or combine components and redesign things, and that investment is part of our planned R&D effort to reduce cost. At the appropriate time and when we can afford to, the business model of the industry is to pass those savings onto the consumer, but we're a long way away from doing that yet."
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Sony's Harrison In No Rush to Lower PS3 Price

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  • Of course not... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by k_187 (61692) on Tuesday February 27, 2007 @01:52PM (#18169836) Journal
    Why would they start trumpeting a price drop now? When one comes (whenever that may be), there won't be much if any of a warning. Even if they were going to do it next week, they won't tell anyone until it happens. The last thing Sony needs is ill will from the people who were still loyal enough to have already bought a PS3.
  • by LukeCage (1007133) on Tuesday February 27, 2007 @02:14PM (#18170180)

    You mean Sony isn't completely obsessed with the price of their console, like potential customers are? They don't feel bad about the lack of rumble, like the potential customers do? They have their own strategy that doesn't involve pleasing potential customers?

    You seem to think that "the press" has it's own agenda here, but in this case they are bringing up legitimate concerns that the public is putting forward and that Sony is ignoring. I won't go as far as saying "self-destructing", but ever since their E3 price announcement they have steadily been eroding the goodwill of gamers and turning off potential customers. Like myself...I was going to buy a PS3 before the sky-high price and lack of exclusives turned me off to it. Their attitude isn't helping me re-evaluate that decision.

    Don't bother with the interview, btw. It's nothing more than PR-flak "we can do no wrong" spiel from a clueless non-gamer executive.

  • Re:yep (Score:4, Insightful)

    by LWATCDR (28044) on Tuesday February 27, 2007 @02:25PM (#18170386) Homepage Journal
    Except when your competition is selling many more systmes and is 100% sold out all the time. I still can not find a Wii for sale. I have no problem finding PS3s. Then add in that that your competition is making a lot more per system sold than you are and it actually does look pretty ugly.
  • Re:Excellent!! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by falcon5768 (629591) <[Falcon5768] [at] [comcast.net]> on Tuesday February 27, 2007 @02:41PM (#18170718) Journal
    Maybe so, but Nintendo will still have made massive profits while Sony sinks deeper and deeper into the abyss that is their game division atm.
  • Re:Excellent!! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Phisbut (761268) on Tuesday February 27, 2007 @07:13PM (#18175262)

    You better sell your shares becuase in a year the public will have already forgot about the simple mini games and rehash games.

    Just like the public has already forgotten about the DS when everybody went out to buy PSPs and watch UMDs

  • by Chris Burke (6130) on Tuesday February 27, 2007 @08:12PM (#18175926) Homepage
    The problem is that, certainly from the point of view of the consumer, PS3 isn't anything new. It's a PS2 with a few generations of silicon advancements incorporated, just like the Xbox 360 is an Xbox with newer silicon. Oh, and better online support and other minor tech, but it's still fundamentally more of the same.

    Cell doesn't bring anything to the table but the possibility of more MIPS. As a computer architect, more MIPS is of course interesting to me, and the particulars of how the Cell works are fascinating. As a gamer, it's just more MIPS. Just like the Xbox 360 is more MIPS. That's no more a "new direction" than the PS2 was when it was released. It's the same direction, just trudging along Moore's Law silicon improvements and little else changes. The only difference is that Sony jumped out further ahead on the technology curve this time, getting something new and paying a price premium for it. Riding the bleeding edge is great if you are a hardcore gamer who buys Alienware boxes, but it is a terrible place to be for what is supposedly a mass-market consumer electronic device.

    BluRay is the same deal -- all it really does is offer more storage. New direction? PS1 was CD, PS2 was DVD, PS3 is bigger DVD. Sounds like more of the same to me. Yet unlike CD with PS1 or DVD with PS2, BluRay is brand-new technology and thus much more expensive than a more established technology would be, and this is a premium the consumer is paying for.

    The fact is that both Microsoft and Sony are greedy, and neither is trying anything new. Both are operating under the "same as before * Moore's Law improvement ratio" scheme of simply pursuing more performance. Sony thought they could beat MS by jumping out ahead on the curve, hoping consumers would be willing to pay the price premium for that decision. They also thought they could leverage the PS3 into victory for BluRay over HD-DVD, again charging consumers for that decision. Going faster down the same path is not the same as a change of direction. The only difference between MS and Sony this generation is that Microsoft executed on the bog-standard console game plan more intelligently than Sony did.

    The only one actually trying anything different this generation is Nintendo. Which I'm grateful for, because the Gamecube was essentially the same as the PS2 and Xbox, a "me too" bog-standard console upgrade if ever there was one. It was N's worst console. Now they're back where they were from the NES to N64 days, as leaders and definers of industry standards. Whether it works for them or not, if you really want to give credit to those trying a new path, there is nobody to pick but Nintendo.
  • Did the Devs take full use of the Cell Proc or did they simply recompile it for the Cell and not optimize it?

    Or is optimizing for a Cell processor an absolute nightmare and so you're best off just getting your stuff running good on the 360 and just plain running on the PS3?

    It is true the PS3 dosn't have a large following. however the real reason this is such a shame is because the injustice done to gamers world wide.

    I would think that having to pay $600 for the ability to play the next "Shadow of the Colossus", "Gears of War", or "Ocarina of Time" (or insert your own favorite 'killer app'/'industry changer' here) would be a huge injustice to gamers. I think any gamer should have at least seen those three games (and many others), the same as any movie buff should see Casablanca or any science fiction fan should read Stranger in a Strange Land. But the fact of the matter is, if the bar for being able to experience the "next great thing" in gaming is set that high, either a) very very few people will be able to experience it, meaning its effect on future titles will be negligible or b) it'll cease being exclusive.

    The world tries to move on, move to better technology, get out of the architecture slump and Corporations continue to hold us back.

    As a Computer Scientist I'm practically insulted by this comment. The idea of throwing multiple processors (or piles of money, for that matter) at a problem is nothing "new" or "innovative". It's just an expensive copout to avoid good design. That's not to say Cell is a bad design. It's just a design much better suited to servers and supercomputer clusters, not video games. More processors doesn't automagically lead to better performance. As I've explained to students before, no matter how many Chihauhas you tie to your plow, they're not going to do a better job than an old stubborn donkey. That's really what the Cell is when it comes to gaming, a bunch of loud small dogs tied to a plow. If you can somehow make them all pull at exactly the right time maybe they'll pull off a miracle, but why go through all the trouble?

    Meanwhile dismissing the XBox 360 as "same old same old" really isn't giving credit where it's due. The original XBox was literally a gimped Celeron PC with an nVidia graphics card. The 360 is a completely new, scratch built platform with custom Power PC CPUs; ie: it has little to nothing in common technologically speaking with its predecessor (except maybe the fact they're both made out of silicon, aluminum, and plastic).

    And then with the Wii in the market, trying to claim Sony is the company trying to move the industry in a new direction goes beyond insulting to malicious.

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