There have been some truly ridiculous articles on the internet suggesting Apple acquires the PlayStation business unit of Sony, while others have simple screamed in what couldn’t be less than the cry of a frustrated Xbox fanboy that the PlayStation brand simply needs to die! While neither of the opinion standpoints makes any sense, we would attempt to lead you through the journey of the PlayStation brand, one of Sony biggest profitable business units, but it wasn’t all gloom, there were equally doomsdays that would have entirely consumed the PlayStation brand.
Our focus would be on the gaming machine, but the handheld hasn’t performed badly, the PlayStation Portable was the most powerful handled gaming device in its time and PlayStation Vita is currently the most dynamic and powerful handled gaming device.
How Did It All Begin?
Sony had initially contacted Nintendo to work together in producing a powerful gaming console, but before the paper works could be completed, Nintendo threw the idea into a trash-can, this prompted Sony to solely enter into the gaming market in 1994 with the hugely popular PlayStation gaming console. By 1996, the PlayStation brand was already a household name, competing with Sega Saturn and Nintendo 64. Total sales of the PlayStation console stood at 105 million units, all of these impressive stats were realized with the power of the console. It was designed to use Sony and Philip’s Compact Disc and this came after Sony had lost the video format war to JVC in 1980.
Don’t Forget: 22 Key Moments From PS3 History
In 1999, Sony sent shockwaves throughout the gaming community with the announcement of PlayStation successor called PlayStation 2. The console was a massive leap over what gaming consoles could achieve at that time. Its architecture was pretty complex, and initially saw resistance from some developers who denounced the console for being too hard to develop games on, this eventually forced Sony into improving the development kits of the PS2 and within few years, there were more than enough jaw-breaking games available on the system.
The PlayStation 2 wasn’t just a gaming machine; it was a monster in its age, using DVD as its standard format. The unprecedented sales of the console later forced SEGA out of business. Sales of SEGA Dreamcast never picked up once the momentum of the PlayStation 2 reached levels of previously unseen heights.
Microsoft also made an appearance in the gaming community a year after the PlayStation 2 was launched; however it was an embarrassing attempt as the company stopped supporting the Xbox in its 4th year of existence. This amounted to hefty financial losses. Unsurprising, Nintendo Gamecube also suffered similar devastating fate, it was axed for poor performance. Sony later sold 140 million units of the PlayStation 2 in its lifetime, making it the most successful PlayStation console to date.
The Ugly Moments
Sony would wish this moments in history never happened to the PlayStation and truly, this part of history could have been averted but it never did. In 2005, Sony planned to release a powerful console; it missed the planned launch date due to technical issues. The absence of the PS3 made Xbox 360 the only console available in its generation and with no competition it sold over 10.5 million units on its first year of availability.
Kaz Haira Effects On The PS3
–Reduced PlayStation 3 price to $400
-Sony still lost $50 on every console sold
-Microsoft’s cuts price of Xbox 360 to $199
-The PS3 is once again $200 more expensive than the Xbox One
-Slimmer model of PS3 introduced with a price tag of $299
-PlayStation 3 goes mainstream
-AAA Titles from Sony’s 20 first party studios exposes the hidden power of the console.
-PS3 Outsells Xbox 360 year after year
-Kelvin Buttler spices things up with “IT ONLY DOES EVERY THING” campaign
-Sony starts making profits on the PS3.
In 2006 the PlayStation 3 was launched and Ken Kutarigi, (Father of PlayStation) ex-CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment had something really crazy to say to fans of the brand; “For consumers to think to themselves ‘I will work more hours to buy one[PS3]’. We want people to feel that they want it, irrespective of anything else.” Ken Kutaragi was capitalizing on the massive success of the PlayStation 2 to drive sales of PS3; unfortunately, people weren’t ready to break the bank to afford a gaming device that was similar to the Xbox 360 in functionality but at two hundred dollar bill more in price tag. This was a problem and Ken Kutaragi paid the price with his resignation letter. Kaz Haira took over and gradually changed the PS3 from an expensive black-box to a true gaming console.
This was achieved with slim models of the PlayStation 3 as well as incredible and jaw-breaking exclusive titles that really showed the power of the gaming console. The inclusion of Blu-ray and making it the standard format was a setback and a gift to Sony. It was among the features that made the gaming console extremely expensive in its early days, but it also helped Sony in winning the HD format war against Toshiba’s HD-DVD.
Games like Metal Gear solid 4 would have been impossible on the PS3. The game by Hideo Kojima consumed 48 GB of 50 GB available on the Blu-ray disc.
A New Order
Sony did learn but they learned the hard way, this ultimately lead to caution in designing the PlayStation 4 which was launched in 2013 at an affordable price of $399. The PlayStation 4 is a complete entertainment hub, although the company insist it is first a gaming machine before being an entertainment platform.
Its closest rival, the Xbox One has thus far failed to pose any threat to the PS4. The PlayStation 4 has been outselling the Xbox One 2 to 1 and that’s partly because Microsoft decided to take the path Sony took eight years ago by making the Xbox One the most expensive next-gen gaming console. Whether or not, the Xbox would have the capacity to recover remains only a mystery as there are no signs of Sony slowing down the momentum of the PlayStation 4.