Kutaragi talks PSP and PSX

SCE’s president talks about the upcoming handheld’s portability and the PS2/DVR hybrid’s challenges.

Sony held its annual corporate strategy press conference yesterday in Tokyo, in which it publicly outlined its future agenda. While the topics were far-reaching, what was most interesting to gamers were Sony Computer Entertainment president Ken Kutaragi’s comments regarding the PSX and PSP.

According to ITmedia, Kutaragi surprised the reporters present by making several cryptic comments after the conference had ended. ITmedia quoted Kutaragi as saying that the PSP “is expected to be used inside the house. No one would walk around while playing games.” Though he might have been talking about basic pedestrian safety, his words stood in direct contrast to Sony’s PSP presentation at E3, which touted its portability.

Kutaragi also touched on the challenges facing the PSX, Sony’s multifunction PS2 and DVD recorder. Since its launch last December in Japan, the PSX has suffered functionality cuts, lapses in its manufacturing schedule, and lagging sales. Responding to questions about consumer reaction to the device, Kutaragi responded with a personal anecdote, “We have other [DVD] recorders in our house, but my family just uses the PSX.”

Kutaragi suggested the possibility of a modified form factor for the PSX sometime in the future, stating, “Smaller products are selling well, [especially] when it comes to LCD TVs. I hope to make the PSX a lot smaller as well.”

During the press conference it was announced that Kutaragi will now take charge of three departments within Sony, effective June 22. He will officially take over top roles in the home electronics, semiconductor, and video game divisions.

The home electronics division is seen as one of the key drivers of Sony’s future business. The home storage sector was recently integrated into that division. It specializes in the development of DVD recorders and has been charting sales that outperform sales of the PSX. Sony’s Blu-Ray disc development unit, a next-generation media format that potentially could be used for the PlayStation 3, is also under the home electronics division umbrella. Kutaragi has controlled the home storage and Blu-Ray sectors since January, those divisions falling under the broadband network department, but the sectors shifted to the home electronics division in April.

Additionally, Kutaragi commented that he plans to combine Sony’s semiconductor units into a single semiconductor division. Until now, semiconductor manufacturing was divided according to which products they were to be used in. Under the new organization, that will no longer be the case.

Kutaragi offered no update on the PS3 or progress with Cell processor development, stating that any official statements would be forthcoming.

News source: Gamespot


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