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PlayStation (Games) Sony Entertainment Games

Sony Announces PS3 Slim, Price Cut, Improvements To Home 427

Posted by Soulskill
from the worst-kept-secret dept.
Sony's press conference today at the Gamescom convention was full of announcements. They officially revealed the PS3 Slim, which will be 36% lighter and 33% smaller than the normal PS3. It will come with a 120 GB hard drive and list for $299 when it hits retail stores in early September. Normal PS3s will drop to that price as well starting tomorrow. (Unfortunately for Sony, their unveiling was spoiled a bit by several retailers jumping the gun on new advertisements, not to mention the rumors that had been swirling for weeks ahead of time.) Sony also announced a PS3 firmware update as well as new features and customization options for Home. In addition to that, the PS3 and PSP will be getting a digital reader service. At launch it will bring access to Marvel comic books, and will expand from there. They didn't talk much about their upcoming motion control scheme, but promised more details next month at the Tokyo Game Show.
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Sony Announces PS3 Slim, Price Cut, Improvements To Home

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  • Sweet (Score:1, Insightful)

    by c00rdb (945666) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:46PM (#29109427)
    I'm gonna buy one. This is a good deal.
  • by 8127972 (73495) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:48PM (#29109463)

    ..... If Sony restored backward compatibility with PS2 games. That and not the price nor the size of the console is why I haven't bought one yet.

  • by ivan256 (17499) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:52PM (#29109525)

    Sony abandoning Linux on new skus means they are effectively doing the same for the old ones.

    Explain.

    To me it says "we used slightly different controllers and peripherals, and don't feel like investing the time to port the drivers and such to a new linux kit".

    I didn't see the bit where they said they were making it stop working on my existing device.

  • by space_jake (687452) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:53PM (#29109545)
    Just seems like they are shooting themselves in the foot by not offering backwards compatibility with the PS2. The PS2 has a huge library and dominated the console market for its generation.
  • Re:preorder (Score:1, Insightful)

    by BobZee1 (1065450) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:53PM (#29109549) Journal
    Hell yes. Time to buy ps3 number two. Call me a fanboi all you want, but I love this console.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:57PM (#29109595)

    This seems like a case of too little too late for Sony. With video game purchases already down significantly ( http://news.vgchartz.com/news.php?id=4794 ) for 2009 and the price point for this new console at $300 it begs the question of why not do this 6 months or a year ago? I can't see this causing a large jump in sales when it is priced $100-$150 more than the 360 and Wii, respectively. It seems like Sony just can't quite get its act together with respect to selling the PS3 to the American/European consumer (although it does well in Japan). This Price should have been the price 2-3 years ago (when the 360 and Wii dropped theirs).

  • by Microlith (54737) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @01:58PM (#29109613)

    They'll make it stop working on your existing device by simply removing the option to install when the update comes down the pipe. I doubt there's any real technical reason for dropping it, other than some beancounter deciding that the loss of respect from technical users was less costly than the upkeep for the hypervisor (assuming they remove it.)

    Assuming they don't, you'll be able to keep what you have on there, but not reinstall or do a new install. Which is a huge amount of ass considering how much work was done by the open source community to port things to the PS3 including kernel patches and various GCC ports and additions for the SPUs. All of that is now wasted, even on older consoles unless you never, ever let them contact PSN.

  • by Turken (139591) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:00PM (#29109633)

    I would assume that the loss of Linux support is likely due to not bothering to accommodate for the large changes in hardware under the hood. If their research shows that not enough people are using a feature make it worth developing and supporting, why should they waste resources on that feature? Of course, by that logic, then Home should have dies a long time ago too...

    At any rate, it shouldn't take too long for unofficial workarounds to show up.

  • Re:Sweet (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GigaHurtsMyRobot (1143329) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:02PM (#29109655) Journal
    Rather than a good deal, I'd say it's finally priced the way it should be. I will also be getting one at this price... I have been a 360 zealot for a long time, but will get one of these for exclusives and PSN titles if I want them.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:03PM (#29109669)

    PS3 (40 GB version): $600
    PS3 games: $100

    Yeah, I'll skip.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:18PM (#29109877)
    Seriously, if that's the only thing holding you back, you're really missing out on some great exclusive titles...
  • by Mad Leper (670146) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:19PM (#29109899)

    The install other OS option was utterly useless, only one cell was supported and you had no access to any of the advanced hardware. No reason for Sony to continue to support a feature that was used by only a very tiny fraction of PS3 owners.

    People who pick this above all others as a reason not to buy a PS3 are just being petulant.

  • by halcyon1234 (834388) <halcyon1234@hotmail.com> on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:28PM (#29110035) Journal

    We'll probably see it return around the time they EOL the PS2 platform completely

    I doubt it. I'd love to be able to play my PS2 games on the PS3, but I know it'll never happen. Not when they can "sell" the same games through the PS Store and get another $10-$20 out of people who have already bought the games.

  • by dc29A (636871) * on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:35PM (#29110141)

    How about they release "PS3 Reliable edition"?

    Of the two PS3 owners that I know (a friend and myself), both have had the Blue-ray drive fail. And mine failed just after I sold the console on Craigslist, making me look like a fraud.

    The plural of 'anecdote' is not 'evidence'.

  • Re:Whoa! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Enderandrew (866215) <.enderandrew. .at. .gmail.com.> on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @02:42PM (#29110239) Homepage Journal

    * 120 gig HDD.
    * Built in wifi-fi.
    * Streams all my media content from my computer.
    * Top-notch BluRay player.
    * Built in web browser
    * Oh, and plays games.

    I think it is a great value actually, But to each their own.

  • by gEvil (beta) (945888) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @03:11PM (#29110665)
    Not to mention the charges on logo-ed shirts. I can't remember prices, but I think those were in the $0.50-$1 range. So I'm expected to pay money to be a walking virtual advertisement. Sure...

    Hell, people pay 20-30 bucks (and more) all the time to be walking real-life advertisements.
  • by BassMan449 (1356143) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @03:15PM (#29110721)
    360 is the same way. It looks beautiful on a decent size HDTV, but developer seem to still not realized that not everyone has a 720p or better TV. On my old 26" tube most text outside of the main menus was completely unreadable for most 360 games.
  • by DigiShaman (671371) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @03:39PM (#29111117) Homepage

    People still watch tube tvs?

    That was a dumb question. Of course they do!

    More often than not, very large tube sets are "good enough" for most people that have them. However, replacing them is such a huge PITA because of how large and heavy they are. So until it decides to die one day, there really isn't much of an incentive replace it with a flat panel.

  • Re:Firmware 3.0 (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MaWeiTao (908546) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @03:39PM (#29111125)

    "What's New" screen (ads for Sony products, links to Sony store)

    The What's New screen has always been there.

    Sony store now appears in several menus instead of just one.

    I'm not sure what you mean by this as I haven't read anything about it, but the Store is already exceedingly easy to access.

    New animated themes that you can buy.

    Themes have always been for sale as well although there are a decent number which are free. In my opinion, however, at least 95% of them are amateurish garbage. I'm not sure how the companies producing these themes were allowed to offer such crap.

    I personally would never waste money on something like a theme. And there's a tool available that allows anyone to create their own theme, for free. I assume the tool will still be available for the slim PS3. And you can change the background image to anything you want any time you feel like it.

    New avatars, some of which are for sale.

    I assume you're referring to Home. This is nothing new. Sony even charges for clothing.

    Frankly, I think it's ridiculous especially given there's not much of anything to do in Home. I also think anyone spending money on that stuff is a fool. But hey, that's their own decision.

    PS2 Compatibility

    Do that many people really want PS2 compatibility? It would be nice, but is it all that crucial?

    I'd argue most consumers are clamoring for the latest games. And for anyone who owns a decent library of PS2 games I have to assume they already own a PS2 otherwise what's the point of all the games.

    Better video support, especially MKV files. (Yes, you can convert MKV files to be playable. No, I don't think that's good enough.)

    Ability to play media files over a Windows/Samba share, rather than having to use media server software.

    I don't see why either of these requests are important. It seems like an issue a miniscule segment of the user-base would be concerned about so why should Sony bother investing time and money into this?

    Ability to backup the PS3 over a LAN automatically.

    Backing up to a USB drive is so trivial that I don't see much of a need for this. And there are games out there that, frustratingly, don't allow backups anyway.

    Less klunky web browsing.

    It's not great, but it does the job reasonably well. There are things that probably should be addressed but honestly, how many people really care about this? It doesn't matter what they do, the experience is unlikely to ever compare to browsing on the PC for many reasons; the PS3 uses a non-standard browser and websites are designed with PCs in mind.

    1080i support for more games.

    Again, this is a minor issue. What HDTV today isn't 720p or 1080p? The biggest issue I have here is that most games are don't run at 1080p, but addressing that is far from trivial.

    Sony's responsibility is to satisfy as large a segment of consumers as possible. It would make no business sense whatsoever for them to try to address every last issue people raise. What you want isn't necessarily what most people want or even care about.

  • by GizmoToy (450886) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @04:31PM (#29111729) Homepage

    That's a standard "figure 8" connector typically associated with AC transmission. You see them on everything, but the place a Slashdot reader is most likely to have seen them is on the cord that goes between the AC wall outlet and a laptop's power supply. Dell uses them a lot.

    I see nothing that would indicate an external power supply, and in fact the presence of that connector would imply the opposite.

  • by Hatta (162192) * on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @04:36PM (#29111773) Journal

    So keep an old CRT around. They're cheap, and you need one to play Duck Hunt anyway.

  • by Beardo the Bearded (321478) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @05:58PM (#29112621)

    Also, LCD and plasma look like hell. That's the reason I haven't replaced my CRT. At least that's the case on every single one I've ever seen, no matter what feed it's using.

    Blue-Ray feed with HDMI cables on a 240Hz LCD still has ghosting and jitter.

    Plasma is like watching a slideshow.

  • by NoobixCube (1133473) on Tuesday August 18, 2009 @08:45PM (#29113879) Journal

    Not enough to justify getting games up to 18 months after their release date, or paying $120 for a new game when the US$ price is about $60 and the exchange rate is up at roughly 80c. At least TV and movie producers have wised up. There was an article here a few years back saying how much of global piracy happened just in Australia, just because we got TV series and movies so late.

  • Re:Firmware 3.0 (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 19, 2009 @05:15AM (#29116549)

    "Do that many people really want PS2 compatibility? It would be nice, but is it all that crucial?

    I'd argue most consumers are clamoring for the latest games. And for anyone who owns a decent library of PS2 games I have to assume they already own a PS2 otherwise what's the point of all the games."

    Then you are being mere argumentative.

    How difficult is it for you to understand that, for the customer, the ability to do something equates to value and hence incentive to buy the product?

    If I'm plunking down hundreds for a console, I want backwards compatability. Doesn't freaking matter if I will use it or not, I may, I *might* want to. If I don't get it, and find out I've got to buy a separate console box, or maybe think I will have to, I'm far less inclined to buy the product.

    A couple of the reasons why the Wii sells isn't because of the motion controllers--it's also because Nintendo announced they were porting old games and it was backwards compatible with the Gamecube. People *bought* classic controllers for this former, even arguing against 3rd party controllers that didn't have analog control.

    Do most people buy a Wii to play old school games? No. But those who did might have said, "Hey, that's cool, I can buy some of the old NES games if I want." Extra value, more incentive to buy. Not a difficult argument to understand.

  • by marcansoft (727665) <hector@nOsPam.marcansoft.com> on Wednesday August 19, 2009 @07:42AM (#29117421) Homepage

    The kind of people who want to tinker with their hardware out of passion would still push the envelope even if the Slim was Linux-friendly. People hack stuff that's completely open as well.

    Ah, but there's a difference. With Other OS, people still want to hack out the GPU access restrictions (as has been done once or twice). With the facility removed entirely, people will attack the Native OS. Piracy shows up when you start messing with a console's native facilities, not a linux-specific mode that games can't run on anyway. I also learned this the hard way: software piracy on the Wii is possible (and popular) because we embraced the existing OS facilities and explored them, which then made it trivial for the warez kiddies to build launchers and whatnot. If we'd done something like BootMii to begin with (and ditched all of the existing proprietary code), they probably wouldn't have succeeded in creating piracy tools. (BootMii is a complete replacement of the Wii software starting at one of the early boot stages, including both the PowerPC code and the "security" ARM code).

    Besides, I know a few hackers (including myself) who have chosen not to attack the PS3 because Sony actually made an effort to enable (some) open programming. People value the Other OS feature more than you'd think.

    Sure, some people have been trying to hack the PS3 Native OS anyway already, but now you'll have a lot more people trying (those who wanted the Other OS feature as is, and those who were avoiding the PS3 due to Sony's attempt at being open).

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