Price is always a big question for consumers, but Sony Computer Entertainment America president Jack Tretton says solid products will sell themselves.
In a recent Fast Company interview , Tretton said the success of a platform is determined by the "value of its features" rather than its cost. He believes the consumer "responds to value" and alludes to the amount of entertainment given by a $60 game, as compared to the total expense of seeing a movie at the theater (which may not come to much less than $60, when all is said and done). Said Tretton:
"When you're buying a platform, when you're buying technology, you're hopefully buying a device that you're going to enjoy for many years. If you look at an investment comparable to a game device be it a system or a portable – whether it's an iPod or cell phone – people are used to spending several hundred dollars to get a portable device.
Typically it comes down to; 'how good is the system and how bad do I want it?' And it's not to say that the price of the platform isn't a consideration, but I don't think price makes or kills a platform. Something that's lousy and very inexpensive is not going to be successful. Something that's pricey will ultimately find its audience if there's enough value there."
The price of the PlayStation 3 was called into question immediately – it has since been cut down to half its original launch cost – and now, everyone is wondering what the new PSP2 (or NGP) will cost. Well, as Tretton says, what really matters is how badly you want it, and whether or not you see enough value in it.