Sony CEO "Can't Imagine" Future of PlayStation

Tom Goldman

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Aug 17, 2009
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Sony CEO "Can't Imagine" Future of PlayStation



When you've got a product out there as futuristic as the PlayStation 3, it's nearly impossible to figure out what comes next.

Sony Computer Entertainment America CEO Jack Tretton may not even be thinking about the PlayStation 4 right now, because to him it's just so far away. In an interview with FastCompany [http://www.fastcompany.com/1563129/jack-tretton-sony-playstaton-3-motion-control-heavy-rain-god-of-war], he confirmed that the PlayStation 3 still isn't even old enough to have a mid-life crisis, while also finding the time to get in a few jabs at competitors.

With the PlayStation 3 just a few months out from its third birthday, Tretton emphasizes that Sony is still sticking to a 10 year life-cycle for the product. "I can validate that we are in the first 25% to 30% of this generation," he said, believing this puts Sony in the "cat-bird seat," meaning it has the upper hand with the PlayStation 3 in the current console war. Ideally, he hopes that "in 2015 somebody is going to be saying, 'This is the Year of the PlayStation 3,'" and thinks the console has the "horsepower to do it with this generation."

In previous generations, companies would be looking to the next big product three years into a console's life. However, Tretton says he "can't even imagine what can be done technically beyond the PlayStation 3 in the near future." According to Tretton, the PlayStation 4 would only happen: "When somebody can craft the technology that exceeds what we're able to do on the PS3, but we are still just starting to harness it." Apparently, the level of power needed to build a PlayStation 4 would be well over 9000, an unthinkable amount by anyone's measure.

So, forget about the PS4 for now, and focus on Sony's upcoming motion controller instead. By the way, Tretton says Sony's perspective is that the company "introduced motion gaming with the EyeToy for PlayStation 2," and that it was "an incredible experience to be able to stand in front of the TV with nothing in your hands, and see yourself on the TV and interact with the objects there." Sorry Sony, but I'm pretty sure that technology was invented by Nick Arcade [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHsKv6Ecd6U]. He does believe that "you have to tip your hat to Nintendo for introducing the motion gaming using their controllers, [and] doing it in a more social fashion." However, he also takes a shot at Natal, saying "we all know that it was not homegrown" and that "it's certainly technology that we worked with before; we had the experience with the PS2 and EyeToy."

Motion gaming jabs aside, it remains to be seen whether the PlayStation 3 can actually hold up for a full 10 years. Microsoft is sure to come out with another product so it can put the debacle of the extremely defective Xbox 360 [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/93943-Xbox-360s-Death-Rate-is-54-2] behind it, though we're at the point where a company can't just come out with a new machine that doubles the amount of "bits" to get people to buy it. I would expect whatever the next Xbox is to somehow negate the advantage of the PS3's Blu-ray discs if possible, perhaps with a proprietary disc format like Nintendo used for the GameCube. For the PlayStation 3 to truly last 10 years, Sony must have some kind of strong plan in place, not just a new controller for people to wave around. It's easy to say that the PS3 will last after its strongest holiday season, but seven more years is a very long time.

(Via: CVG [http://www.computerandvideogames.com/article.php?id=236634])


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Paddin

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Sep 30, 2009
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I think the fact that everytime this man gives a talk he continually jabs at the opposition shows that his arguments, and console, alone arent strong enough to stand up for themselves. I really hate how everytime he has a conference he sounds like

"We are so amazing in every way and xbox sucks, PS3 FTW!"
 

Jack and Calumon

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10 years is a very long time, but there is some more than could be done. New franchises and more perhaps?

Calumon: 6 more years! 6 more years! Yay!
 

Zer_

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Feb 7, 2008
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Futuristic? We're talking about a console that can at best barely outperform the X360 on a graphical basis.

Hahahahahahaha
 

JeanLuc761

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It's nice to see him being optimistic (if a bit arrogant) but he seems to be forgetting that technology, specifically graphical advancements, do not stay on hold for 10 years. Epic is going to be revealing Unreal Engine 4 in a few years and new consoles will have to be released if they want to keep up with it. I can certainly see the PS3 having a lifespan of 10 years (the PS2 is still going pretty damn strong) but I seriously doubt the machine has the hardware to keep up to date.
 

reg42

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It seems Sony are still blowing their own trumpet. I do love my PS3 though.
 

StriderShinryu

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We'll see how long this viewpoint lasts once MS announces it's next system. Not saying it's happening any time soon, but you know that despite everything Sony says they are already researching the next PlayStation. After seeing what happened with the PS3 and that they are just now catching up, there is no way Sony is going to give MS another yearlong head start.
 

FloodOne

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Will the ps3 be the only playstation on the market for seven more years? Not likely, but it will be sold for the next seven.
 

rembrandtqeinstein

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Anyone want to post a graph of sony games division revenue/profit since PS3 was released?

Wouldn't it be great to work there? "Boss said he doesn't care if we keep losing money for the next 7 years just like we have for the last 3".
 

Woodsey

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Zer_ said:
Futuristic? We're talking about a console that can at best barely outperform the X360 on a graphical basis.

It can and has done, don't really get what you're saying. It seems to struggle in multi-plat games a little though, although that seems to be getting squeezed out.

Still, I don't think that a 3-year-old set of hardware can be described as futuristic.
 

Sparrow

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Well, I'm sure there will be a "4" in the title somewhere, along with "Playstation". And I think it'll most likely play those game things.

Though, I'm not 100% on that. So don't quote me. (Unless I get it right, then feel free to.)
 

Asehujiko

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Feb 25, 2008
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Tom Goldman said:
and thinks the console has the "horsepower to do it with this generation."
My RAM(all 8192MB of it) would like to have a moment to laugh at the profound ignorance of this statement, it won't take long, since it runs at 1600Mhz instead of the usual 667Mhz. Most other components of my rig echo that opinion. Except for my 1Tb 7200RPM HD, who is having a midlife crisis over being almost as old as the current gen consoles.

When OpenGL gets SDK's for DX11 and all consoles are royally screwed on the "non gamers who only want shiny graphics" front.
 

SharedProphet

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And by "futuristic," you mean "financially disastrous," right?
Tom Goldman said:
Apparently, the level of power needed to build a PlayStation 4 would be well over 9000, an unthinkable amount by anyone's measure.
What does that sentence even mean?
Tom Goldman said:
I would expect whatever the next Xbox is to somehow negate the advantage of the PS3's Blu-ray discs if possible, perhaps with a proprietary disc format like Nintendo used for the GameCube.
PS3 is not leading the console race. I don't think negating the "advantage of Blu-Ray" is what Microsoft should be worried about.
 

AceDiamond

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2015 would be the ninth year of the PS3s existence, and I do recall someone else from Sony saying the plan was to have the PS3 around for a decade.

...they're really hoping for the "finish strong" strategy here, or at least Tretton does.
 

Stranger of Sorts

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Aug 23, 2009
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My mates dad works for Sony and apparently they've got some virtual reality thing going on, but then again that may not be true.
 

VanityGirl

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Sony saying they they basically invented the motion controller is like that Twilightard saying that Stephany Meyer (sp?) invented werewolves.

I don't think any console needs to be fully updated. The motion plus helped the Wii, and while it may lag behind graphically, it's a fun sustem.

However, ten years is a long time. Honestly, the only reason I was playing the PS2 still when the PS3 first came around was because 1) They were still making games for the PS2 and 2, the PS3 was too expensive.

*shrug* We'll have to see.
 

Tom Goldman

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Aug 17, 2009
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SharedProphet said:
Tom Goldman said:
Apparently, the level of power needed to build a PlayStation 4 would be well over 9000, an unthinkable amount by anyone's measure.
What does that sentence even mean?
If you use the internet, you'll find out someday.

SharedProphet said:
Tom Goldman said:
I would expect whatever the next Xbox is to somehow negate the advantage of the PS3's Blu-ray discs if possible, perhaps with a proprietary disc format like Nintendo used for the GameCube.
PS3 is not leading the console race. I don't think negating the "advantage of Blu-Ray" is what Microsoft should be worried about.
It's just speculation. What advantage does the PS3 have over the 360 technically? Blu-ray is it. At some point, I feel Microsoft will need to negate this advantage... in the long term.
 

llafnwod

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To Mr. Tretton's credit, we are beginning to approach the limits of computing power with conventional lithography, but there's still potential for multiplying processing power quite a few times. The idea that the PS3's technology is going to hold up for another seven years is pretty silly, although I do applaud the fact that he wants to focus more on software innovation rather than jacking up transistor density every three years. Makes me glad to have a PC, though. :)
 

Mordwyl

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Call me when you design a prototype for virtual reality gaming guys, really. There's no limit to where games can reach.