A number of online sources, including Gamasutra, have received a copy of an email survey that Sony Computer Entertainment America has sent to certain of its registered consumers.
The survey, which is reprinted below in full, pertains to possible online service-related features for Sony's forthcoming PlayStation 3, and further outlines that Sony may be intending a more robust PS3 online service, as Phil Harrison hinted
at 2005's Game Developers Conference Europe.
The questions asked in Sony's survey are as follows:
1. On a typical day, how often do you play games online?
2. Do you own a PSP?
3. What is your preferred Online gaming format?
4. What Online Gaming Formats do you own?
5. Do you think you will purchase a PS3?
6. A single identity and password for all online games?
7. Global Lobbies allowing you to play against anyone in the world?
8. Game Lobbies should be language based. (English, French, German etc)
9. Game Lobbies should be based geographically.
10. A standard, interactive lobby structure for all games.
11. Headset support in all online games?
12. A QWERTY keyboard as standard for messaging.
13. USB Keyboard support for every online title.
14. Friend List allowing you to see online/offline status?
15. Friend List allowing you to see what game your friends are playing?
16. Private Messaging across games?
17. A feedback rating allowing you to choose who you play against?
18. Ability to remove players out via a majority vote?
19. Game Host has the ability to remove players?
20. Automatically filter opponents based on connection quality?
21. The ability to download music, game demos and other content?
22. Ability to access the dedicated game forum whilst in game?
23. Ability to take screenshots during the game and share them with friends?
24. Ability to take movie clips in game and share them with friends?
25. Ability to play my music during a game?
26. An in game grief reporting system?
27. Ability to access and manage your gaming profile via PC, PSP as well as PS3?
28. Community features without the need for a game disc.
29. Ability to choose an Avatar for all online titles.
30. The inclusion of a web browser.
31. A specific lobby only for Adults.
32. Service should feature a Global Ranking system for each game.
33. Game Lobbies should be Eyetoy compatible.
At last year's GDCE, Sony's Harrison suggested that the PS3 would be "fundamentally a network platform from the beginning", and continued by describing it as a platform where "consumers easily graze content dynamically, delivered digitally, unlike other consoles [such as the PlayStation 2] where network functionality was an add-on."
Thus, although Sony executives have previously attacked aspects of the Xbox Live service for being overly controlling, it's clear that the company is thinking and developing deeper network functionality than some observers might consider, although this questionnaire does imply that the functionality may still be in somewhat of a nascent state.