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Sony's Stringer Talks PS3 Pricing, Release Dates

An interview with Howard Stringer, the recently appointed CEO of Sony Corp., conducted by the Hollywood Reporter, has apparently shed more light on probable release dates...
An interview with Howard Stringer, the recently appointed CEO of Sony Corp., conducted by the Hollywood Reporter, has apparently shed more light on probable release dates and pricing for Sony's next-generation PlayStation 3 console. In particular, Stringer commented directly on the pricing of the PlayStation 3 and its relation to Sony's Blu-ray next-gen optial disc strategy, stating: "PS3 is a subsidized Blu-ray play that will sell 20 million units. The first HD player will be on the market for $1,000. PS3 could be at $300 or $400. Sony will be selling them at a loss the first six months to a year just to get Blu-ray players out in the market. So studios realize they need to have their content on it." According to Stringer, the use of Blu-ray technology in the PlayStation 3 is the primary reason why studios have decided to support the format over its rival HD-DVD. "We own two studios. I don't think we would have been able to push Blu-ray through without them, because the initial enthusiasm for HD-DVD was because it was cheaper," he is referenced as saying. In addition, the Hollywood Reporter article cites specific dates for the release of the PlayStation 3, suggesting that the Japanese launch date of the PlayStation 3 will be March 2006, and the North American launch will happen in 'winter' of the same year. However, these facts do not come as a direct quotation from Stringer, meaning they may be open to interpretation, but they are very much in line with previous guesses from industry analysts, and mirror the launch pattern of the PlayStation 2 in terms of staggered release.

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