News Article

Analyst: PS4 Must Launch First to "Remain Competitive"

Posted by Sammy Barker

Timing is everything

With the next generation of consoles supposedly looming, Sony finds itself in an interesting place. The PlayStation 3 has only really recently hit its stride, with its life-cycle likely to be extended later this year when it inevitably reaches $199.

As such, the Japanese giant could do with holding off the next generation for another couple of years – but Colin Sebastian of analyst firm RW Baird believes the company needs to act as quickly as possible with PS4.

He said in an interview with Games Industry:

Sony is in a tough position. In many areas of their business, they are losing share, such as TVs and computers, and their challenges are well known in gaming.

The need to invest in a significant upgrade cycle for PS4 comes at a awkward time for Sony, but to remain competitive longer term in games, we think there needs to be another price reduction on the PS3, and then be first to market with a next generation console.

Rumours regarding the next PlayStation have been rife in recent weeks, with some sources stating that the system is codenamed Orbis internally. While many of the reports conflict each other, there does appear to be some convergence over a 2013 date – with one insider claiming that Sony is confident it’s going to beat Microsoft's next console to market.

But it’s still not clear how an earlier than expected release would benefit Sony, with a strong software catalogue and competitive price point also required. Regardless, there’s no doubt that if Sony could check both boxes and beat the next Xbox to market, it would have an incredibly strong basis to build on.


User Comments (14)



CanisWolfred said:

I don't think it even needs a price drop yet, let alone a new console. What they need to do is secure more exclusives and have more connectivity between the PS3 and the Vita.



Squiggle55 said:

Mickeymac is dead on. I was just about to say that if the PS3 can significantly improve its connectivity with the Vita and deliver the type of remote play that only exists in our imaginations, then we don't need another console. That is all they need to focus on to blow people's minds IMO.
If they screw us over by saying the type of remote play we promised is really only achievable with a PS4, then I'll be disappointed, but I'll still buy a PS4 quickly.



Paranoimia said:

Analysts, eh? Can't live with 'em, can't shoot 'em...

Well, you can shoot 'em, but not legally. Probably. Which is a shame.



CanisWolfred said:

Nothing could get me to buy a PS4. I'm tired of buying new consoles. I'm sticking with the PS3 for as long as possible.



Ginkgo said:

As much as I agree the ps3 is only just hitting its stride. Sony can't afford to be left behind. The trick is to get the PS4 (and launch) right. Wii-U is coming out, Microsoft is working on something, they would be crazy to sit back and say, nah, lets just stick with the PS3 for a while. At the very least they need something to compete with Kinect, which is the main driver of XBox sales at the moment. Star Wars Kinect sold lots of XBoxes, even though everyone said it was a rubbish game. People still love the idea.



Supereor said:

Anybody feel if the PS4 launches, and the PS3's lifespan ends, so will the Vita's for a lengthy period? Because the Vita is so PS3 integrated, Sony will need to take some ha-UGE time off to upgrade PS4 features to the Vita. If you don't think it'll happen, then, you may think the PS4 isn't launching anytime soon. It's a mildly tough situation for Sony, to let the PS3 stand off against competition, or launch the PS4 and upgrade a big part of the Vita's software...



Savino said:

Nintendo and M$ are the only ones who needs new consoles!
PS3 has a lot do give and mostly now with vita.
Sony MUST wake up until this E3 and make something new with the hardware that it already have.



shingi_70 said:

For some reason I find hitting its stride funny.

Yeah going into next gen sony has the most to lose as the playstation brand has been damaged. Japan usually goes with the first console out so its a good chance that the wii u will be the market leader and get most of the attention. That leaves sony to bulk up there and in europe where microsoft will no doubt be trying to make inroads in.

But a ps4 shouldn't be there focus they need to really push the vita with western support while keep all the niche jrpgs from jumping to the 3ds ship. And reinvest in move this year. Sowercy should be the marquee title that's pack in and hit thrid parites agressivly to use it even if you have to pay them. Make sure there are bioshock and epic mickey move bundles and try to grab call of duty for move support. No doubt microsoft is going to try to get kinect into black ops 2.



Corbs said:

Right now Sony needs to focus on keeping PS3 relevant and getting Vita jumpstarted. I think it's a bit early to start thinking about PS4 when there's still plenty of life left in PS3 if they play their cards right.



fchinaski said:

I don't see Sony launching the PS4 on a year that they should focus on making the PS Vita strong on the Western markets, specially when cross-play with the PS3 is such a big deal. Why would they invest so much on cross-play with a console they'd plan to make obsolete on the following year? It just doesn't make any sense to me. Anyway, I don't think we'll se a new Sony console until 2014... but we'll find out soon enough.



rjejr said:

" competitive price point"

I think that's about all that needs to be said. At least much moreso than timing. And of course games are always a good thing to have around launch.
Sony doesn't really need to care when WiiU launches b/c that system is about 3 years late to the party and while I don't have any insider knowledge it won't be a "generation" ahead of the PS3. And the Xbox720/Next won't outsell the PS4 in Japan so timing isn't an issue there anyway. So if there where a list of things for Sony to worry about w/ the PS4 launch I'ld say:
1. Price
2. Games
3. Features
4. Timing



shingi_70 said:


But Japan usually goes with the first console out in that region so Wii U could easily grab that piece of the pie. Also America and Europe are bigger and more diverse markets than Japan alone and Sony just can't live off of that one market.

Not only that but Japan as a market is slowly becoming more focused on handheld units compared to consoles.

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