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.

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Jawknee
Jawknee
10 years ago

I sort of agree. On one hand a high price will turn a many a gamer off but on the other hand early adopters like myself will gladly pay the high price for a sweet new piece of hardware. And Sony always seems to hook up their early adopters with something special.(60gb PS3 FTW!)I think the PS3 kinda proves his point. It started out slow but is now a success after all these years of bad press. A testament to how great the platform really is.

Godslim
Godslim
10 years ago

yeh i aggree man its a hard one….price does come alot more into it for the more casual gamer tho….me i got 60gb the day it came out and sony even replaced it for free when it broke the first time because "i got it the day it came out" they told me, even tho it was out of warrenty
plus i was chosen as an offical eu beta tester aswell which is great meaning i get a load of betas before everyone else
thats one thing i will give sony even tho ps3 was more expensive it does do a hell of alot


Last edited by Godslim on 4/6/2011 6:03:31 AM

BTNwarrior
BTNwarrior
10 years ago

well If you look at something like the ipad he does kind of make a point. And while most say that the ps3 had a slow start because it was $600, I would have to dissagre. It was because it was $600 and resistance was the only great game on it

chedison
chedison
10 years ago

except resistance isn't that great of a game

Clamedeus
Clamedeus
10 years ago

I liked the game, it was pretty fun to play. Everyone has a different taste in games they either like it or they don't like it, if someone says it sucks, sometimes that's not embedded in stone or as fact.

But again it depends on the person and what they like.

Godslim
Godslim
10 years ago

no way dude when fall of man first came out it rocked i remember day one with ps3 playing that online with my mates and loving it

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
10 years ago

i think the $600 price tag was was seious drag on ps3 sales. it really only seemed to take off at $299. i think a handheld gaming device will be even more sensitive to price. 3ds sales are well below expectations with many siting its price.

kraygen
kraygen
10 years ago

But a cheap piece of junk is still a piece of junk and just because you slap a high price tag on the 3ds doesn't mean it isn't still a piece of junk.

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
10 years ago

i have not seen a 3ds in person, but i have heard a lot of people call it overpriced junk

Jawknee
Jawknee
10 years ago

Nope. Sales started to pick up shortly before they lowered it to $299.

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
10 years ago

the @299 slim model boosted anual ps3 sales by 76%. approximately 66% of ps3 are at the $299 price point.


Last edited by Excelsior1 on 4/6/2011 1:04:06 AM

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

PS3 sales were solid prior to the price cut to $299. Remember that the price was reduced to $299 in a series of moves that involved new models and bundles. Sony didn't simply lop $300 off the price in one go. The sales of the PS3 certainly accelerated when it hit $299, but even before that price point was achieved the PS3's sales were not terrible. If you don't believe me, go look at the lifetime sales figures.

Jawknee
Jawknee
10 years ago

Highlander, Excelsior loves to remind us how "poorly" Sony has done this generation. Rest assured "he gets no pleasure in saying it" but he must remind us. 0.o


Last edited by Jawknee on 4/6/2011 10:56:38 AM

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
10 years ago

i just pointed out that sales took off at the $299 price point. they certainly were not solid at $600. many in the industry say the $299 slim was the turning point for sony this gen, and its sales reflect that.

the perception that the ps3 was overpriced at the start of this gen cost them a lot of sales, and even seemed to linger after the incremental price drops.

your are right that i get no pleasure in pointing out sony's loss of marketshare this gen. it's not been fun watching the rise of 360, but i'm certainly not going to pretend it did not happen. it did not have to be this way.


Last edited by Excelsior1 on 4/6/2011 1:19:09 PM

Jawknee
Jawknee
10 years ago

Yet you continue to regurgitate the anti-sony talking points day in and day out.

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
10 years ago

it's just ignorant to think that the price point of the ps3 didn't cost sony a ton of marketshare. i don't want to see a repeat of that history. sony talking like this has me worried. it is only out of concern for sony i mention this. i would have thought they learned a lesson, and i don't want them to price themselves out of the market again. that's all.

sony talking about working with developers on it's hardware, and the reports the psp2 would be reasonabley priced had me feeling pretty good.

i want sony to be #1, and have enjoyed hearing they finally overtook the 360. i'm not anti-sony.

Deathstriker
Deathstriker
10 years ago

The price doesn't make the console… the buyer does.

I payed $700 for my ps3 and resistance on DoR, but then again I was with Sony. Even if the compition was half the price. Look where there at now??

I agree if you pay alot of money for something most likely it's not for the meantime… I payed 700 bux and rent games most the time.

While people I know have bought 2-3 ds's…2-3 xboxs… some because the dsi was better then the ds, now the 3ds…. same for xbox, the new xbox slim…

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
10 years ago

I agree with Tretton, but I still hope we're not in for a sticker shock on the new PSP2.

And as for his statement….
"Something that's lousy and very inexpensive is not going to be successful".

It's a shame all those 4 & 5 RRODed re-buying bots didn't get that memo.

Excelsior1
Excelsior1
10 years ago

you know what i think was telling of the $600 pricre tag of the ps3? one of the administrators on this very site said he would not have bought one at $600 if were not relatated to his job.

kraygen
kraygen
10 years ago

I'd agree that it won't make it or break it, but I think it will make a difference. I wanted a ps3 at launch but couldn't afford it at the time. I do however have an 80GB MGS4 special edition which was still $500, but I had to save for 6 months to get it.

Like I said probably won't break it, but the more affordable it is, the more people will be able to purchase it immediately instead of having to wait.

StangMan80
StangMan80
10 years ago

I partially agree. I went out to buy the 60GB PS3 for $600 bucks and was worth every penny, It was worth the price and we are still enjoying it today.
But…
Consumers always look at the price first. No matter how great the thing is people will hesitate and maybe never buy the object no matter how much you want it.

The PlayStation 3 did not sell so good at Launce because of the price.

If that isn't true then what makes the PS3 today sell so good?… It's because of the price.

daus26
daus26
10 years ago

Price yes, but a lot of gamers are also seeing more value from the ps3 compared to its launch days, and by that I mean the games. To gamers, the games will be the biggest factor in terms of value, while the casuals will see values as technologically advanced features like GPS, touch screen, 3G, Apps, etc.

If you think about it, there are much more casuals then gamers so you'd wonder why the Ps3, as technologically advanced as it was compared to its competitor didn't do so well. Two biggest reason on why I think that is are: 1. It's mainly marketed for gaming, and there were two other consoles that were a lot cheaper. 2. Sony has weak marketing.

Basically what I'm trying to point out is that if Sony wants to determine its success by its "value," then they better let the consumers know about it (aka marketing). Otherwise, they'll just think it just do games, and not much else.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

Daus

The Wii is not HD, the only other HD console was perceived as cheaper, but in fact never really was. for an equivalently specified system, the 360 has always been on par with the PS3, despite lacking a key feature that the PS3 possesses – BluRay playback.

Even today people push the lie that the 360 is cheaper. It is not. A 360 with HDD at the MSRP is the same price as a PS3 at MSRP.

thj_1980
thj_1980
10 years ago

But the 360 has a lower version that costs only 199 can't go wrong with that one. that is 100 cheaper plus 4 gb is very little but enough to start playing!

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

Shadow,

As I said, the PS3 has always been on par for an equivalent configuration, except of course for the advantage the PS3 has by also handling BluRay.

Comparing a diskless 360 to a PS3 with a hard disk isn't exactly the most equal comparison, is it?

A2K78
A2K78
10 years ago

If price is never a barrier when it come the success of a platform, then the SEGA-CD, NEO GEO Pocket and NEO-GEO CD would've sold like gangbusters, this given the fact the high quality of software that existed on these platforms which where very expensive in their time.

Anyhow price is "always" a barrier to platform's adoption/success. Why do you think the iMac/MacBook had problems keeping up with the Window's platform. The same goes for 3D HDTV's which are struggling to sell, and the list goes. In fact the biggest evidence that price is always barrier stand from the fact some companies are willing to risk the razor and blade sales model to sell an expenive product at the most attractive low price. Overall though the razor and blade model really a lose-lose situation as Sony and Microsft proved as the Xbox and PS3 piled up tons of red ink for both companies.

Overall I would say of the 3, Nintendo is the smartest because they can sell a product at cost and turn massive profits in the process. The fact that the 3DS was massively profitable proved this.

"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."

From the ouset the PS3 was sold at a massive lost to the company, however the only reason why Sony started with a $600 MSRP was due to the fact they risk being priced out by Microsoft and their cheaper model 360's. To further add Microsoft really took it to Sony by engaging them in a price war, a price war that forced Sony to lower the price while at the same time piling up red-ink, red ink they are still piling up. The only thing cushioning it is the sales of software in which they receive big publishing roytalties from.

kraygen
kraygen
10 years ago

"The fact that the 3DS was massively profitable proved this."

Where did you get that "fact" from? Everything I've read said it sold well first week, but once people got to see it they stopped buying.

Please link.

___________
___________
10 years ago

the 3DS has literally shattered the records set by the wii and DS, but catch is its also recorded the highest return rate in history!
allot of people are returning it with eye strain, headaches, or the black screen error.
only a couple days old and its already broken?
oh my!

Lord carlos
Lord carlos
10 years ago

A2K78
As they say on spartacus
'Words fall from your mouth as sh!t from a$$'

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

You use Apple produts as an example of products that don't sell because they are expensive? Ironic really, considering that ther iPhone 3, iPhone 4, iPad, iPad2, iPod, iTouch and just about every current 'i' product from Apple sell at prices that no one else could justify, despite the fact that they really don't cost anything like the price being asked. But the cult of the apple still sells their overpriced products like hotcakes. If there is a better example of a product that is both expensive and sells well despite that, I'd like to know what it is.

The fact is that Sony sells it's gaming devices at a loss, they always a) over engineer the product, and b) push a cutting edge specification. This means that their products are always extremely good value for money and very capable. The NGP looks set to continue this trend.

Regarding DS, it sold extremely well – immediately upon launch but it has a) not met Nintendo's own expectations, and b) has begun to encounter consumer resistance on the basis of eyestrain, headache and health warnings for younger gamers. Not the most auspicious launch to a product ever, and hardly a model for others to follow.

___________
___________
10 years ago

oh BS its not!
if not, then why all the price drops jack?
why not leave the ps3 at the ridiculous price it was from launch!?
my lord, this is so utterly stupid id expect it to come out of patchers mouth not yours!
and this guys the CEO for one of the worlds largest companies?
no wonder there bleeding money!

thj_1980
thj_1980
10 years ago

You are just a disturbed person.

Do you own SONY?

WHY DO YOU CARE?

I would be worrying about your ps3.
When that thing YLODs on you, you'll be crying!

___________
___________
10 years ago

what a stupid question!
if sony is bleeding money then that means less games.
thanks to them loosing money we lost 8 days, the getaway 3, half of sonys london studio, half of SOE, the agency, god knows what other unannounced games got canned because of the losses!

Wissam
Wissam
10 years ago

I can't say anything about the matter. but one thing I know that not all the consoles or handhelds consumers have jobs. some of them still
very young. when it come to big old fans like me
or you guys its not that big deal. but when it
comes to the younger people …..


Last edited by Wissam on 4/6/2011 4:45:25 AM

kevinater321
kevinater321
10 years ago

Well if it was 3 cents i don't know anyone who wouldn't buy it. And if it was $1000 then i doubt many people here would buy it. So yeah price matters.

kraygen
kraygen
10 years ago

Yeah, but he's not saying that it doesn't matter, just that price alone will not be the downfall of a device.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
10 years ago

Sony's original price of $600 wasn't even the highest "release price" for a gaming console, as I clearly remember that the 3DO Interactive Mediaplayer gaming console had a $699.95 price upon it's release. And since they were hard to find at first, a lot of retailers that had them were selling it for $799.95

Back to the PS3, I wanted aone when they first came out but due to severe money restraints for a couple years, I couldn't get one till around late 2009.

But by the time I finally was able get the 60 gigger they were no longer made, so I bought a used one in which I still paid $440, and after the 1 year extended warranty & the tax, I wound up paying almost full price for it, at $585.
And even at that $585 for a used machine, I still enjoyed every freaking second of it(until she died last month).

gumbi
gumbi
10 years ago

This sounds like Tretton is foreshadowing a pricey NGP.

Now, while price may not be the sole factor in purchasing decisions. It is absolutely a factor. I know there were a LOT of people that wanted a PS3 at launch, and wanted it baaad but had to wait because they just couldn't afford that $600 price tag ($650 here in Canada). Add taxes and a couple games to play and you're creeping up on 1G, that's a lot of coin.

I know in the months following launch there were always PS3's on the store shelves here, and they weren't moving. Obviously this had nothing to do with the PS3's value, it just cost too damn much for most would be buyers.

I've already resolved that if NGP is <= $300 then I'm sold. But as bad as I want it, if NGP is over $300 I'm going to have a real hard time with that decision.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

Or he's foreshadowing a less expensive than you might think NGP by heightening expectations both about the device's capability as well as it's cost, when a less expensive than expected device launches, it is perceived as a greater value than it might otherwise be.

gumbi
gumbi
10 years ago

Here's hoping!

If he's gearing us up to expect a high cost so we'll be pleasantly surprised with a lower cost at launch then I'll be … pleasantly surprised 😉

daus26
daus26
10 years ago

I just can't agree. I had several friends who couldn't buy the ps3 at launch because of the price. They also saw the value in it, and of course they want it really bad.

I think a better way to say it is how the price compare to its competition. When you have no competition then price becomes a smaller factor. But when there is competition, it becomes a big factor. No matter how much a value the ps3 was at launch, it's gonna have a tough time selling when there's two other "gaming" systems in its generation that costs much less.

The NGP's main competition will be the 3DS. If it wants any chance of success they'll have to price it reasonably, compared to it. Price the NGP $200 above the 3DS for example, watch the 3DS sales fly, while NGP sales lag. Although not a portable, the inevitable competition to the NGP might be the ps3. I figured people might compare on what the two can do and see what's worth more. Then again, the other being a "portable" like laptops are to PC, it might not be as much of a factor.

I hope Tretton is not too serious about this. The beginning of the ps3 is exactly how he describes this whole thing. No matter how much of a value it had, it's main objective was gaming, and if there's two other consoles that can do "gaming," it's going to be tough. If they plan on doing the same thing to the PS4 era, or even the NGP, I wish Sony the best of luck. He says it doesn't determine success, but I say it can.


Last edited by daus26 on 4/6/2011 9:39:49 AM

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

I understand your point, but then I also remember when the PS3 launched it was not in reality any more expensive than an equivalently configured 360. But, people bought the 360 and paid for the XBL subscription instead of the PS3 because the PS3 was perceived to be more expensive – even though factually it was not. That was an example of perception overcoming reality. The reality was that the PS3 was pound for pound no more expensive than the 360, and yet the PS3 offered a fully spec'd BluRay player in the bargain which made the Ps3 incredible value for money at a time when BluRay players alone cost $500.

It's not really the price that matters, it's the perception. iPhone proves this beyond a shadow of doubt.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

Honestly, I'm not sure even the most hardcore Sony fans saw a whole lot of value in the PS3 at launch.

Virtually no games, an unheard-of Blu-Ray feature that hadn't yet caught on, a Network that was a shadow compared to Live, and the competition of an established next-gen console…the value just wasn't a fraction of what it was today.

If the price was still $600 and it had the same values it now has, I'm not saying it would sell nearly as well, but I'm saying it would sell better than people might think.

thj_1980
thj_1980
10 years ago

People are buying Ipod touches and Ipads at $200 per ipod and $500 per ipad. Just because they look cool.

I agree with you and disagree.

Yes the price is a turning point.
And Still look at apple, their prices are high but lots are buying them!

I guess we'll have to see what it offers. Call of Duty will be one big selling point for this since a lot of fans will want cod on the go.

Crabba
Crabba
10 years ago

Ben, I saw excellent value in the PS3 at launch, and I'm not even a "hardcore Sony fan", just a fan of great technology. I thought the PS3 had a lot of great games at (or near) launch like Resistance and it had good fighting games, racing games etc right at launch, and not that much later came Heavenly Sword and Uncharted. The blu-ray player itself was a great value for anyone interested in next-gen HD movies or gaming for that matter and I can't really say I thought there was anything wrong with the PSN Network back then either, but also didn't really use it that much or care about network feafures either.

Temjin001
Temjin001
10 years ago

There's definitely a balance between cost and value. The PS3 at $600 was less of a value to the consumer at launch than it is now at $300.
As time goes on the cost of hardware goes down and the value of the product goes up as new services and software increase. Making the PS3 that much more lucrative with each passing day.

Today, the PS3 Slim boasts a huge library of games, critically acclaimed exclusives, a more robust PSN, larger packed in HDD's, Netflix, 3D support, and now, virtual multi-platform parity, and a solidified Blu-Ray movie medium (HD-DVD what?).

As we've observed, more and more players worldwide have taken notice and have now made the PS3 their choice platform over 360, despite the 360 having a 1 year head start in the market.

*my Sony rep PR statement for the day…. well, maybe.. year =p


Last edited by Temjin001 on 4/6/2011 10:21:24 AM

Robochic
Robochic
10 years ago

I do agree, when I got my launched PS3 the price didn't stop me at all cause I knew that in time I would be getting a high quality kick ass console.

I did get the 3DS had a lot of giftcards from my birthday and christmas and I have to say I really enjoy it.

As long as what I pay for gets me what I want and more than I am happy and I have to say Nintendo and Sony have done both for me at least. So what ever the new psp price is I could care less as long as it gives me what I really want, quality, great games, great features 🙂

main_event05
main_event05
10 years ago

This is the way I see it, you get what you pay for. When I buy electronics or whatever I do some comparisons and if the specs don't make for much of an easy decision I'll look at the price and most of the time I choose the more costly because I feel that with a higher price comes a higher quality, which isn't always the case, but it is clearly the case with PS3 vs Xbox 360.


Last edited by main_event05 on 4/6/2011 1:20:16 PM

thj_1980
thj_1980
10 years ago

WIth the IPAD at $500 a pop the price doesn't stop people form buying those.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
10 years ago

Current iPad2 configurations with 32 and 64GB of storage cost even more than that. You can pay as much as $700 for one – assuming you can find one.

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