Sony: Market not ready for download-only consoles

Written by Joe Martin

October 7, 2011 // 12:01 p.m.

Tags: #digital-distribution #download #industry-news #playstation #ps3 #retail #sales #sony #sony-time-is-not-right-for-digital-distribution #steam #vita

Sony believes that the time is still not right for download-only consoles that sell games exclusively through digital distribution systems, company bosses have said.

The comments go partway to explaining why Sony's upcoming handheld, the PlayStation Vita, will support physical copies as well as digital.

Speaking to Edge Sony Worldwide Studios boss Shuhei Yoshida explained that the company didn't believe internet infrastructure was consistent enough across the world to support such a device.

'We believe, for some consumers, the time is [right], but for other consumers, the time is still not [right],' said Shuhei Yoshida.

'So, we believe the time is still not right to go download-only as a platform. Some PS Vita titles, like Uncharted: Golden Abyss, will be close to 4GB in size, which could be too large to download for consumers who do not have a fast broadband connection.'

'Also, some consumers like shopping in retail stores, talking to knowledgeable store clerks, buying and playing games on the spot. We do not want to remove that capability from consumers.'

SCEE boss Jim Ryan agreed, saying that: 'There are consumers in parts of the world - this is a global device - where the digital model has not yet fully been embraced.'

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