Sony bets the PlayStation 4 will be cooler again

comp_sony08__01__630x420¬†For almost two decades, (SNE) Sony PlayStation video game console has been the pride of the legion engineering company. With innovations such as DVD and Blu-ray movies and the Cell processor supercomputer-like, the PlayStation has sold more tables Trinitron TVs and company rivaled its iconic Walkman music players. However, the PlayStation 3, Sony aging rock star created in 2006, needs a makeover. On February 20, Sony is expected to reveal in New York the first details of a new and powerful machine that pushes the limits of gaming and entertainment. “See the Future”, scoffs at the company in a short video on his blog.

The question that arises is whether this iteration of Sony PlayStation is in tune with the latest fashion for mobile computing. Consumers can play on their smartphones and tablets in the kitchen, the bedroom, or in transit. Neither are in awe of the brand Sony, as they once were. Kazuo Hirai, executive director be appointed to last year due to its success the PlayStation business management, has said he considers the console to be the centerpiece of a universe of exclusive content, Sony phones, tablets and televisions that operate in all consumers’ homes. Such a strategy has oceanfront largely abandoned by Panasonic (PC) and Samsung Electronics and is difficult to sustain with the emergence of low-cost manufacturers in China, says Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter. “Sony refuses to admit that they have a market like they had 20 years ago,” says Pachter. “They are desperately clinging to the idea that you can recover.” Hirai declined to comment for this article.

Sony CEO Kazuo HiraiTomohiro Ohsumi / CEO Kazuo Hirai BloombergSony

Sony needs to get their strategy right PlayStation. After eight years of losses in the TV business, projects a $ 215 million profit this year, only after the sale of its headquarters in New York for $ 1.1 billion. As business Hirai auxiliary sacrifices as chemicals and display decisions that wants to generate 70 percent of Sony’s sales and 85 percent of operating profit in 2014 of only three companies: digital imaging devices mobile games.

The PlayStation 4 is facing a similar challenge to Sony TV struggling business, where margins are squeezed by Samsung efficient manufacturing and lower cost Chinese products. In games, Apple (AAPL) iPads and Samsung Galaxy devices have battered console manufacturers’ time-tested strategies for profit. Many mobile phones are heavily subsidized by U.S. wireless carriers. And as more consumers watch shows and play games on portable devices, they find that you no longer need the features offered by expensive end TVs and game machines to take the graphically rich experiences once unique in the world Console. The PlayStation 4 “Sony will show if it has the power to surprise as Apple consumers with their products,” says Hiroshi Yamashina, a Tokyo-based analyst at BNP Paribas Securities (BNP).

Hirai said he expects the new PlayStation to drive demand for online music and video service Sony and Xperia phones and tablets. To succeed, Sony also has to bring casual gamers who are more likely to buy a console to watch movies on Netflix (NFLX) to play games. Just two months after its rival Nintendo tried to use the same group with its new console Wii U, which cut its sales forecast of 4 million units in March, from 5.5 million forecast previously. Researcher NPD Group said sales of packaged games fell 21 percent last year, while downloaded games for PC and mobile devices grew 16 percent.

Nick Earl, Senior Vice President of Electronic Arts (EA), as game developers still consider home consoles the best platform for advanced gaming and entertainment. Today, however, EA is focused on tracking of mobile money. “The core players that have traditionally been buying a set of packaged goods each week, you really are starting to change their shopping and playing games on iPads and other mobile devices,” says Earl. “We believe the future of gaming is much more related to these devices.”

Analysts say keeping game developers on board is one reason Sony will reveal secrets that the new PlayStation can allow users to share video of your game, and can add a touch screen to the comptroller for more than six months before probably will go on sale. The approach, which uses Sony in 2011, when he announced the PlayStation Vita portable player is designed for developers interested in creating unique games that best look for what is worth buying the console. But the Vita, stuffed with all sorts of wireless technology, control system, and the ability to keep people amused, has not delivered, and Sony recently cut its sales forecast.

Hirai said Sony is the best positioned to capitalize on its engineering roots and use of cloud-based services to offer customers a more personal user experience. “At the end of the day, we have to make excellent products,” Hirai said in January. The question remains whether Sony’s reputation for quality hardware is sufficient for consumers to take notice.

The bottom line: Sony, which has lost money on television in the last eight years, wants to launch mobile results that challenge the PlayStation 4.

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