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Sony's Head of Corporate says they can't ignore the Switch and its success

The following comes from a Nikkei interview with Kazuhiko Takeda, Sony's Head of Corporate Planning...

Q: So it's possible Sony could exceed its profit forecast?

A: At the moment, we can say with certainty that 630 billion yen is achievable. But even our strongest operations have issues to be tackled. Our greatest risk now is losing our intensity.

Q: What sort of issues?

A: At our gaming business, sales of the PlayStation 4 are strong heading into the holidays. But we can't ignore the Nintendo Switch, which has also captured consumers' attention. Our business model involves selling both the game console and the software for it, so we're working to get more customers paying continuously for content, for example through paid subscription services.

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Well now, that's certainly an interesting response. Makes you wonder what Sony is going to cook up to combat the Switch's success. Seems like they're finally taking the Switch as serious competition.

Tags: switch

Comments

Top Rated Comment
wouwter
Wed Dec 06 17 07:51pm
Rating: 8

It’s really obvious Sony, just release your exclusives on the Switch. I’d buy Horizon Zero Dawn on Switch full price. 👍

nightsowl
Wed Dec 06 17 07:33pm
Rating: 2

Ah yes. More subscription services. Just what everyone wants.

... Right?

Haha, right? "We're thinking of ways to charge our consumers even more money."

Yeah! It's great for me as a customer to pay for something and don't own it. So the company can decide how long i can play the games i payed for.

Unfortunately, PlayStation Plus turned from a good service with a fair pricing to an overpriced service which forces many players to play their favorite games online. Even Dark Souls most barebone online features are tied to PlayStation Plus. And by the way, Sony is not even hosting the servers for the games. PlayStation Plus will continue to get more expensive. PlayStation Now is overpriced as well and not well received and they really think about another paid subscription service?

Uh Oh...here comes the Playstation 4 portable transformer.

That sounds like a THREAT! Honestly, Sony are mostly lucky they let Microsoft get blamed for planning to institute the same DRM, always-online system they were going to and they got to backpedal in private. They do have much better exclusives than Xbox (and I say this as an Xbox One owner who never owned a PlayStation product), but they should never have grown complacent about having such a commanding lead this gen, because it was not really because of anything they did and I bet they were surprised. The less self-aware Sony fanboys got so used to being number one console for sales and graphics they don't seem to be able to process that Xbox One X is far more advanced and Switch, even with shortages, is routinely outselling PS4. But most of the Sony fans are reasonable, normal people. Years of a small minority gloating on virtually every video game site really stunk up the brand for me, despite me knowing in the front of my mind that those people aren't Sony's fault and not representative of most Sony fans.

wouwter
Wed Dec 06 17 07:51pm
Rating: 8

It’s really obvious Sony, just release your exclusives on the Switch. I’d buy Horizon Zero Dawn on Switch full price. 👍

I agree. Forget copying yet another competitors idea and then letting it fade into oblivion... Just hop on the switch train. Heck, even just ports of exclusives after they've been on the ps4 for about a year or something.
Or I guess they can just keep paying for games to NOT be on switch like monster hunter world and see how that works out for them.

I'd be totally down for Uncharted trilogy on the Switch. It's one of the few Playstation franchises that I've been really wanting to play through.

We call our PS4 the Naughty Dog machine. As they are the only games we play on it. PC for third party, Sony for Naughty Dog and Nintendo for Nintendo!

Even during the tough Wii U years, Nintendo has still been more profitable than Sony and is now back to being the richest company in Japan overall. They have been far from being an underdog even under the worst circumstances even when it feels that way. It would be interesting to see what Sony's response is. They already had their answer to the Switch in the Vita's remote play feature and that under-performed dramatically. There aren't too many good options for them it seems.

The Vita was such a great piece of hardware, I hope they make something! Plus competition is always good.

I believe they are done with portables and even said there's no market for it. They abandoned the Vita years ago, so I doubt they'll try their hand again any time soon.

Wed Dec 06 17 10:05pm
(Updated 1 time)

Says the guy who admitted to being paid to post anti-Nintendo posts.

Correct, Sony employed me to write comments on GoNintendo. I get 80K a year plus benefits.

You said you got paid elsewhere. Companies do pay people to spread FUD and complain. I'm just going by what you said. You may have been joking but you sure act like it.

It took them a while to realize that, but I seriously doubt they can make a competitor if that's what they're thinking.

It's pretty clear at this point Sony doesn't know how to stay afloat in the handheld market.

vinlauria
Wed Dec 06 17 08:43pm
Rating: 3

Get owned, Sony. Bet you're blindsided now that the PS4 actually can't coast on empty hype and gamer hysteria anymore, huh?

twistedn
Thu Dec 07 17 09:56am
Rating: 1

Er, uh the PS4 is about to outpace the 3DS in sales, wouldn't be surprised if it happened over black friday.

I love the PS4's library and would buy a portable version in a heartbeat. Vita successor, not so much. I guess basically a handheld PS4 like what the GB Player did for GB games on the TV, but in reverse.

Sony doesn't necessarily need to "cook up" an answer to Switch. PS4 is fantastic, it's just doing something different. But of course they should still pay attention to what Nintendo is doing and learn from it. You can learn and change your approach to things without wholesale copying what other are doing. Nintendo might not have had some of the colossal failures that they did if they had paid a little more attention to what others were doing and had a better idea of where the industry was going. Nintendo is still doing their own thing but are obviously paying more attention to trends. All of these companies can stand to improve in one way or another.

A portable PS4 will be a terrible idea.

A portable PS4 will end both Sony and Playstation 4. A portable ps4 will need to have ports of a LOT of games and that cost more money that what it's worth (developing and testing), and having a missing back library will make it the weakest option.

A Vita-like system has two options that will both end in failure


  • A portable only system that will fail since the Switch is both portable and home console
  • A hybrid console that will make it a copy cat and could kill PS4

Sony has put a lot of money on PS4 and many network services, it is a wiser choice to double on that and make it the most inviting machine with games and services, that make a defensive strategy against the Switch and lose a lot of money

While I agree that the PS4 portable is pretty stupidly late to do at this point, Vita did not fail because of it being too powerful.

It failed because the thing was too damn expensive. Phones can do what the Vita can do and they cost pretty cheap. Then there was also the fact that Sony charged their own SD cards that are way too expensive compared to other third party SD cards like Sandisk.

Its not the issue that a hybrid can kill the Playstation brand. Its just that it is too late to even do such a thing that its only going to make more loss than profit. If a portable is to be made, how can playing games on the go work?

Remember that the Switch uses Tegra. what can Sony use that is more powerful and less expensive? Snapdragon certainly isn't that cheap. Only other option is to use SD cards in built and we have seen how that turned out for Vita.

Sony is struggling at this point. Their TV business isn't top as it used to be, Vaio is dead, their phones aren't doing any better and Playstation is hardly keeping them relevant. Only thing that is keeping them around I think is movie production.

It would be a real shame to see Sony slowly drop out the market (not going to happen soon obviously but that would be a worst case scenario.) The big three keep each other on point. It's good when they all keep doing well.

Damn true. Sony helped bringing in games that were region locked a lot of the times, Microsoft made gaming global by expanding their PC and console markets and Nintendo brings in innovation that helps games to be expanded further. If either one of these companies disappear, its only bad for the industry as a whole because competition is always a good thing.

ovivoul
Thu Dec 07 17 01:05pm
(Updated 1 time)

Ehh, Microsoft made gaming global? What do you mean?
MS did a lot for online gaming, that''s for sure.. They also brought broader media features to consoles. And they are now in the process of connecting devices and breaking down walls between devices. (that's their current vision.)

But gaming was already a global industry well before MS jumped in.. And though they obviously contributed I don't think you can say their impact on making gaming more global after they joined global was more than the other two..
And if you're talking about casual markets I think Nintendo, Apple and Google had a much bigger impact in that area..

Maybe I just didn't get what you meant.

In any case, each of the three companies (and all the other secondary publishers and developers around them) has a big role in shaping gaming for the future, that's for sure.

hinph
Wed Dec 06 17 10:46pm
(Updated 1 time)

I can't really see Sony releasing something like the Switch right now. They have a fanbase that expects cutting edge technology in their consoles, so the PS5 is going to have to be a traditional box. I suppose it's possible to try another handheld that also docks to a television, but then they would sort of be competing with their own home console. Besides, it would be too late to catch up to Switch sales anyway.

I think Sony is better off just letting Nintendo have this niche right now and focusing on what their own fans want. It's not like the Switch is hurting them.

I don't wanna start any arguments, however, I would like to say I would snatch up a Portable PS4 in a heartbeat. Even if it's a blatant and downright gross copy of the switch, as long as I can transfer my cloud saves of Persona 5, I don't care.

So, the head of Sony is basically contradicting the Playstation guy that said the Switch wasn't a threat... Hum...

ddark
Thu Dec 07 17 10:08am
Rating: 1

Yeah, I don’t like when companies are inconsistent like this, but I also sort of understand it, I guess.

Both guys obviously ultimately answer to the share holders, but one reads like a PR statement meant to show confidence through the holiday sales period, and the other is from a guy smart enough to know that after Switch’s Black Friday/Cyber Monday showing (and really it’s entire run since March) that trying to gaslight investors with a PR statement probably won’t fly.

lokamp
Thu Dec 07 17 07:22am
(Updated 1 time)

This was clear even without having to state it in an official interview... After all, why grab the 3DS's biggest 3rd party series success story and showcase it on their E3 press conference (plus making a "For Everything But Nintendo" sequel of it) otherwise?

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