by Anton Shilov
05/05/2013 | 06:40 AM
Perhaps, some believe that the PlayStation 4 video game console is only about games, but the device is oriented on all types of consumers, claims Sony Computer Entertainment business unit. In fact, Sony implies that its next-generation console will actually have vast capabilities beyond games. It seems, Sony is right.
“In terms of the ‘war for the living room’, we have no intention of abandoning that approach. After all, Sony is a company that has a long history of making audio-visual products that are designed for the living room, so this is a natural course for us. If anything it’s the other companies that have changed course by moving into this space,” Shuhei Yoshida, the president of Sony's Worldwide Studios at Sony Computer Entertainment, in an interview with 4Gamer web-site, which was partly translated by Edge Online.
Even though Sony has disclosed loads of details concerning gaming capabilities of the PlayStation 4 as well as its architectural details, the company remained relatively tight-lipped about other types of entertainment that it will provide with the PS4. The company claims that the next-generation console will provide sophisticated non-gaming capabilities, but it will disclose them later.
Sony is going to discuss the PlayStation 4 at the upcoming Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) trade-show this June. It is logical for Sony to reveal launch lineup of video games for the PS4 that will be available this year or early in 2014. Given the fact that the E3 is mainly aimed at gamers, Sony may not be exactly interested in revealing non-gaming capabilities of its next-gen console at the show. However, in case Sony’s arch-rival Microsoft Corp. will by that time disclose both gaming and non-gaming features of Xbox Next console, which will reportedly be called Xbox Infinity, the Japanese company will have to respond to this.
In fact, Sony does have vast consumer-oriented capability, albeit, not yet announced. Sony did say that it will provide backwards compatibility with PlayStation 3 games via cloud. A special datacenter to run PS3 games requires vast performance. The interest towards old games will decrease vastly after a year of the PS4 on the market. As a result, Sony will have unused datacenter performance, which could be used for non-gaming apps.
Microsoft reportedly wants to make Xbox an ultimate entertainment device that will provide not only gaming, but also TV-, video-, audio- and other services, including original TV-shows and exclusive content.
It looks like Sony clearly wants to compete against Xbox Live TV, Apple TV, Hulu and others. The company does have several huge trumps at hand: Sony Pictures movie studio with huge franchises like Jan Fliming’s 007 James Bond as well as things like Iron Man and Spider Man in its portfolio; customer loyalty; exclusive AAA-class video games. A premium-class consumer-oriented service would just add to the strength that Sony already has.