In Defense of the PlayStation 3


posted 7/12/2006 by Charles Husemann
other articles by Charles Husemann
One Page Platforms: PS3

I’m also a bit mystified that people are considering that Sony’s online service is a copy of Microsoft’s Xbox Online.  This like the controller “copying” is just an evolution of something rather than just copying it directly.  Aggregating demos, online content (like game trailers and videos), setting up multiplayer matches, and micro transactions is nothing new as to a degree America Online and other content providers have been doing it for years if longer.  All Microsoft has done is to create a successful service that brings a concepts together in a customized interface for the Xbox 360.  I’m also curious why people aren’t saying that Nintendo’s virtual concept isn’t just a knock-off of Xbox Live arcade, it’s the same concept right?

What Sony is doing differently is that they aren’t going to charge for multiplayer matchmaking like Xbox Live does and they are creating an open system so that developers aren’t constrained to their system…they just provide the hook-up to that system (whether or not game companies charge for matchmaking services on their end is a slightly different matter). 

The real X factor here is whether or not Sony leverages their large content library or not.  While Microsoft and Nintendo are gaming power houses the one area they really can’t compete with Sony is the amount of media content (movies and audio) that Sony has in house.  We all know that Spiderman 3 is going to be one of the biggest movies of the year in 2007, what if Sony released a few PS3 only trailers?  What if the Blu-ray version of the movie included some playable content or some mini-games that you could only play on a PS3? We could also see Sony releasing songs and music videos in advance on their service which would give them a huge boost on Microsoft and Nintendo who have to go to third party companies to get content like that.  Sony could also release a music service that would allow you to purchase and play songs on both your PSP and your PS3.

I think this covers most of the main beefs of the system.  I’m not going to touch on what seems to be a fairly weak launch lineup so far as Sony may have a few cards up its sleeves and that most launch lineups are usually pretty weak.  To be honest this article was a little harder to write than I thought it would be as it is not always easy to write against popular opinion.  That said I am looking forward to seeing what other surprises Sony has in store for us as we get closer to the launch line up and I’m already working on the paperwork to take the day off before the system launches to stand in line at my local electronics retailer.

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