PlayStation aficionados/addicts have a number of legitimate concerns over the announced Playstation 4. The inability to play used games is not one of them. What are those concerns? How about an indeterminate price for a phantom machine that no one has seen, coupled with a lack of a firm release date among others. Gamers are a paranoid lot, and the fact that a NeoGAF user stumbled upon patent application No. 20130007892 for an “Electronic Content Processing System” and “Use Apparatus” that would/could associate individual game discs with matched user accounts didn’t help matters one bit.
Unlike the mincing steps of a bound-footed geisha, Sony Worldwide Studios boss, Shuhei Yoshida, didn’t mince his words when he unequivocally put these fears to rest in a conversation with Eurogamer regarding owning a physical disk.
“That’s the general expectation by consumers,” said Yoshida. “They purchase physical form, they want to use it everywhere, right? So that’s my expectation.” The Sony Corporation (NYSE:SNE) executive continued: “So, used games can play on PS4. How is that?”
That’s great. Thank You.
And lets face it, while Sony has had their share of missteps as all companies do, they’re not foolish enough to alienate a large portion of their consumer base in this manner. That would be tantamount to gift-wrapping market share to both Nintendo Co., Ltd (TYO:7974) and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT). It would resemble the folly of redesigning The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO) in the 1980’s, as PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP) needed only sit there gobsmacked and say, “Thank you very much.”
For a more contemporary example, look at Android’s ability to compete with iOS. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s interest in controlling all aspects of something they’ve already millions of sold the users, most of whom will never return. I’m sure there is some wise suggestion/adage/proverb, originating in Asia, that explains that the tighter you close your fist the more water/people/birds will flock to HTC and Samsung. I paraphrase.
Rather than the rantings of my oft deluded brain, let’s look to gaming analyst Michael Pachter’s writings from last month:
Sony would be materially hurt if its console blocked used games and competitor consoles from Microsoft and Nintendo did not. The Wii U is already on the market with no used game prohibition, and we believe that Microsoft would take advantage of Sony’s prospective decision to block used games by marketing that its own next generation did [sic] NOT block used games.
Thank you sir. That’s precisely what I was trying to say.