The PlayStation Network (PSN) currently accessible by users of Sony’s PlayStation 3 gaming console that lets them download games, movies, songs and other multimedia content may soon make its way to other hardware from the electronics giant, company CEO Howard Stringer revealed in a recent interview. Bringing the Internet and downloadable content into family living rooms will be made possible by integrating the PSN into Sony Bravia HDTVs, for example, with Sony Ericsson handset owners and PlayStation Portable gaming console users also benefitting from a version of the interface.
“Sony has begun the transition from a closed system to an open one,” Stringer said, adding the number of users on the PSN is limited by the number of PS3 units sold. “Sony has a vertical structure for each product line, an organizational structure that resists change, so it will take time to achieve this network growth,” he commented, though he and a large number of other Sony employees are proponents of expanding the availability to owners of other Sony hardware.
A further hint of the PSN’s migration is the rumor of the next-generation PSP portable console losing its UMD optical drive. Sony has also recently began portin its XMB user interface from the PSP to other devices, including HDTVs and DVD players.
At the same time, Stringer said the company is “evolving the PS3 into a platform for Web services,” citing strong sales of the Apple TV as proof of the emerging market. This could mean Sony may add streaming videos and more content to the PS3’s PSN content, which already has downloadable movies and TV shows.