Friday, September 22, 2006 rakes Sony over the coals

Dealbreaker's Opening Bell

See, it's not just me!

Cuts PS3 Price by 20 Percent as Japan Users Balk (Bloomberg)
One of the only areas that Microsoft is really kicking ass in
these days is in videogames, with their XBOX 360. And even in that division the
company's losing money, so kicking ass probably should've been in quotes. And
it's really not even that it's kicking ass or doing that well; it just happens
to be lucky that it's going against Sony, one of the most inept technology
companies around. The number of formats/standards battles that the company has
come out on the losing side of is just staggering. Already, Sony is being forced
to cut prices on the PS3 (due out.... sometime) so that it can compete.
Meanwhile, everyday, serious gamers are forced to wait it out, while many bight
the bullet and buy an XBOX. It's always great in business to have lousy

There's really nothing else I can add to this. Japan might get 100,000 units at launch time, maybe. Initial global shipments have been slashed from 2 million to 400K, the launch is now going to miss Christmas, and even the head of Sony's game division is expressing defeatist sentiments, which given the insular and mandarin culture of the senior Sony execs is downright shocking:

After a recall involving millions of Sony-made personal
computer batteries and yet another delay for the PlayStation 3 game console,
even one of Sony's top executives is questioning whether the company is on the
right track.
"If you asked me if Sony's strength in hardware was in decline,
right now I guess I would have to say that might be true," game unit head Ken
Kutaragi said after Sony pushed back the PS3's European launch by four months to

I think that for a division head at Sony Corp to come right out say, essentially "We're screwed" is monumental. Don't be surprised to see Mr. Kutaragi fall on his sword, at least metaphorically, over the whole Playstation3 disaster.

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