Sony: Digital-only content delivery model "not possible" at this time

Kaz Hirai believes networks aren't ready to deliver large game data

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Colwyn2290d ago (Edited 2290d ago )

The psp go was the test that lead to this decision. I love the psp go because it is so compact with awesome portability.

gamingdroid2290d ago

I feel bad for the people that became Sony's expensive test project.

Imagine buying a $250 handheld that received subpar support (we are talking lack of game releases, late game releases), getting discontinued after 2-years and finding out you were subjected to an experiment.

PirateThom2289d ago

Same could be said of any early adoptor of any electronic device.

darthv722289d ago

I mean support for the psp go in the form of digital content is also available to every other psp user from the 1000-3000.

I have a 1000, 2000 and Go and have enjoyed buying a game over PSN for the Go (killzone liberation is fun) and also being able to dl it for the other systems.

Some of the Go's best features are incorporated into the vita except out. Go figure it was introduced in the 2000 series and improved for the 3000 and the Go but not the vita. it just means they will have something to add to a revised vita when/if it comes out.

death2smoochie2290d ago

Yet Steam is quite successful....
Digital only content failed for Sony and the PSP, yet it is successful for Valve(Steam)


Depending on your business model, it can be successful or not.
Sony's business model was not viable for this.
So yes, Kaz is correct. It is NOT possible at this time FOR SONY.

NAGNEWS2290d ago (Edited 2290d ago )

needs a network and steam haz it

if you know what i mean

NYC_Gamer2290d ago

agree,the main problem is that digital titles are way overpriced on consoles.but it's done by design so the gamer would depend on buying retail from stores.

Gothdom2290d ago

digital-only will be viable worldwide when ISP's stop being douchbags and stop putting charges on extra downloads, or taking off limits. Here in Canada, all our ISPs suck.

the crtc wants to input a 20gb limit for ISPs... imagine how fast this limit would be broken.

gaffyh2290d ago (Edited 2290d ago )

Steam and console are completely different things. Consoles need to allow people to play game offline, Steam means that you are forced to have internet in order to play the games or download the games.

Digital-only is not ready for the mainstream, Steam users are NOT mainstream. The proof for this is the fact that downloadable titles on the PSN sell way way less than retail games for the most part.

NYC_Gamer2290d ago

well,it's because look at how expensive the psn version it's not hard to believe the gamer would choose's by design though just think about it if new games could be brought for 40 bucks on psn really doubt many would head to gamestop and pay 60 bucks for the same title.

BlackTar1872290d ago

I Dl'd BF3 off orgin and it took like 8 hrs then had multiple problems . I Dl'd Star wars ran perfectly.
Dl' l4d 1 had huge issues dl'd l4d2 and worked perfectly.

I will not be Dl'ing any more games if i can help it but i got a new comp and then a Gift card from work so i dl'd all those games over a 1 day period.

gaffyh2290d ago

@NYC - true, but then Sony also has to keep retailers happy, which Steam does not have to, because it is just a piece of software. If PlayStation was a piece of software, they could easily be digital-only, but they have to rely on retailers to sell their hardware and the games and peripherals etc. So they have to keep them in the loop, which is why the download prices are higher for the full games.

gamingdroid2290d ago

***Consoles need to allow people to play game offline, Steam means that you are forced to have internet in order to play the games or download the games.***

My experience is that Steam is very similar to consoles, but don't use it a lot though.

Once you download a game on Steam, you can play it offline, right?

Obviously for both consoles and Steam/PC you have to download the game.

Am I missing something?

BrutallyBlunt2290d ago

@ gaffyh

You couldn't be further from the truth. You don't need an online connection to play your games. To access the Steam store you do but once your game is installed you don't need to stay connected.

There is so much false information here. Sony relies on retail distribution, that's why they can't be digital only. Stores will not carry their product if there is nothing in it for them. They now rely on used game sales, Steam doesn't need retail. This cuts out the middleman and consumers get better prices. Why buy stuff off of PSN of its more than retail? Steam has better sales and sales more often. They also have more customers than Sony. They just hit 5 million simultaneous users, Sony is lucky to hit 2 million.

gaffyh2290d ago

But you need it to download them, and to download the multitude of updates that come out for the games. I do have a steam account, so I know. Just the fact that you need an internet connection, need to make an account, is enough to make most consumers confused. Consoles make it extremely easy to play games, that is why they're successful

BrutallyBlunt2290d ago (Edited 2290d ago )

You need to be connected to create a PSN account too. You also need to be connected to receive game patches on PSN. You are misleading people into thinking you need to have a constant connection on Steam, that is simply not true.

Steam has been far more profitable for Valve the past few years than PSN or even the Playstatipn 3 for that matter. Sony is stuck pleasing retailers while wanting to expand digitally. Steam doesnt need to appease retailers. They are VERY successful offering digital content. Right now it doesn't make sense for Sony, that doesn't mean it can't work. Valve has proven you can offer a digital outlet and have a huge fan base that continues to grow, all while being very profitable.

Why support the PSP Go when prices don't benefit the consumer? Steam offers far better value and because of that they have far eclipsed PSN in both revenue return and growth.

gaffyh2289d ago

@LevelHead - If you honestly think that anyone is reading my comments and are being misled, then I'm sorry. But the fact of the matter is that retail games sell more than PSN games for that SAME reason, because the need for internet as well as an account on PSN/XBL/Steam/Whatever is enough to put consumers off. This story is why Sony say digital only is not possible right now, and that is the reason. As well as the retail reason which I mentioned before.

If the internet/account process was so easy for everyone (including those who are not tech savvy, which are a LOT of people), Sony would not hesitate to have gone digital only. See PSPgo.

BrutallyBlunt2289d ago

You still don't get it. Sony is doing it now and as far as confusing the consumer, that's called implementing online passes. Sony is now adopting this into all of their 1st party games. Consumers now have to put in a code to be able to play Uncharted 3 online for example.

I already explained how digital can work and does work. Sony is still stuck working with retailers. They also cannot undercut the retail pricing on the software.

Sony tried a digital only experience with PSP Go and it was poorly thought through. You couldn't play UMD games on it, the software wasn't cheaper and the unit itself was more expensive than the regular PSP. With a smaller screen too.

Millions of people have access. In fact the majority of Playstation 3 owners have their units connected. Steam also has games that are small to download and other games above 10GB.

It is also no more confusing and no more time consuming to create an account on Steam as it is on PSN. Steam makes PC and now Mac gaming easy and accessible. Difference is they are not reliant on retail stores to carry the hardware.

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Arksine2290d ago

I love steam, but I don't buy all of my PC games through it. Steam certainly isn't a failure, but to say that Steam game sales compete with Console game sales would be fooling yourself.

And really, Steam is branching itself into physical media as well. Skyrim is an example of this.

BrutallyBlunt2289d ago

What does Skyrim have to do with physical media and Steam? Steam is just another service to get your games, much like PSN. The fact is digital content is expanding and Sony is slowly heading there now. Even now some Vita games can only be purchased through PSN.

GraveLord2290d ago

It's not only about price. You also need an extremely fast internet connection to download AAA games. I don't know about where you live, but here in America fast internet speeds are very expensive. I can't see them getting cheaper any time soon.

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Persistantthug2290d ago

"While we might not see a digital-only model in the near future, we could see one by 2016 - which is when the PS3's 10-year life cycle matures."

No....we won't be ready to download 50+ gigs in 4 years either.

Convas2290d ago

People have been saying this for months. My internet connection takes 45 minutes to an 1 hour to DL a 750MB game demo, close to 2 hours of more for anything a gig or bigger.

Now imagine people with my 750kpbs DL rate (On a VERY good day) trying to download Killzone 3 or Uncharted 3 ON launch day, with those sorts of speeds. Not only would it hog bandwidth on your end and on the servers end, but you'd be waiting for at least 10 hours, and that's a generous guesstimate.

No, the world is not ready for Digital-only distribution, nor will it be till at least 70% of gamers have internet connections at or above 5Mbps.

C_Menz2290d ago

I typically get 2-4 mb/s download on Steam on a standard cable internet plan. Plus it wouldn't be on launch day since with digital sales you have the option of preloading a week or two ahead of time and the game unlocking on launch day.

C_Menz2290d ago

I don't think we will see a console that goes digital only for quite sometime. Why? Because it is a different market and it wouldn't work if it was digital only.

For birthdays and holidays parents buy physical copies for their children and not digital coupons. Sure if it was digital only they would adapt, but why change when they dont need to?

Then comes to another issue with the stores built around games(like Gamestop) who will fight tooth and nail to keep consoles from going completely digital.

Personally I think that Sony should offer all of their 1st party games as a download. Knock off $20 from the retail price day 1 and call it a day. They would substantially increase their profits(no selling a game to Gamestop for $15 and they sell it for $60). Plop in a 1tb drive(dirt cheap for them to do so once the market bounces back) and it would be perfect.

I download about 95% of my games from Steam/etc. on my PC. I have around 45 games currently on my 1tb HDD(none on my 120gb SSD) and it is only roughly 30% full including the 10k pictures, dozens of movies, and programs I also ahve on it.

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