Sony Can’t Quit You, Plastic Discs

Sony Can’t Quit You, Plastic Discs

As the company should! Sony did win that HD format war, you know.

While pundits predict that the next generation of consoles will be digital download only, Sony continues to be bullish on disc-based media.

“The reason retail has been around for thousands of years is because it works really well at showing you a range of content, having experienced store staff that can find the game you are looking for, tailor choices to your needs and upsell you something you hadn’t thought of,” Sony Computer Entertainment of Europe honcho Andrew House tells MCV.

Continuing, House adding that digital retail is still confusing. “Browsing is a little overwhelming and too confusing, and that’s the challenge that makes me think there’s a strong role for physical media for years to come.”

This past summer, Sony Computer Entertainment boss Kaz Hirai stated that he felt physical media still had its place due to infrastructure issues. To think everything will be downloaded in two years,” Hirai said, “three years or even ten years from now is taking it a little bit to the extreme.”

Physical media is wonderful, and I hope it sticks around as long as possible. I don’t only want to buy and play games, I want to be able to hold them in my hand and stick them on my shelf. My real shelf.

Above, actress Rei Kikukawa promotes Blu-ray movies in Japanese ads and in-store retail displays.

Sony: Digital retail is confusing [MCVUK via Eurogamer][Pic]


  • The only people proclaiming digital download only are technofetishists and the people who have a financial stake in it, huge swathes of the world dont have access to a fraction of the conveniences enjoyed by european and us gamers and the benefits of their internet and as such its a lot harder to see any real improvement over buying physical media outside the fact that its sometimes easier to find old games.

  • Not in Australia anyway! Considering some DLC or a demo is something like 1-1.5GB I don’t wanna imagine what a whole PS3 game would be being on Blu-Ray and all.

    It seems weird – on one hand they wanna go digital for the PSP but not for the PS3. I guess the compatible thing but I still think people prefer going to a store and have something physical. You can lend it out or trade it in, dont see that happening via digital.

    I just want ONE lazy thing in the next gen – DVD stacker for AT LEAST 3 discs. Especially at this time of the year when for 2 hours I wanna play some Black Ops, then some Halo or even some Assassin’s Creed.

  • Really? Everyone likes holding discs… because why?

    I can’t speak for console, but 95% of my games on PC are on Steam. I have access to those games on any computer I install Steam on, and then all I have to do is either copy the SteamApps folder across, or install from my external hdd that all my Steam game backups are individually kept.

    But maybe I’m crazy. I know I know… I’m pretty silly for wanting to pay $7 for Metro 2033, $5 for L4D2 (AND be able to get the non-gimped version) etc etc. Yes, I agree it sucks being able to look at a gameplay video on my screen and decide whether I want to buy a game when my Steam client ever-so-un-conveniently shows me whenever I log in what the specials for the day are, or when new games are coming soon/released.

    Bandwidth is a BS excuse in Australia. MANY ISPs have very cheap/massive plans. I pay $50 a month and get 200gb (upload counted though, but no peak/offpeak times).

    Meh.. Enjoy shopping retail guys 🙂

    • Ooo, and with DLC as it is these days (every game just about has it – either paid for or free) you end up having to download soft media anyway… At least if the game originates as 0’s and 1’s it all stays that way and can be backed up easier.

    • Also once the NBN is fully operational and running at 1Gbps we could download an entire blueray in 7 minutes. So the download argument is total rubbish. Sony are kidding themselves. They just “wish” that physical retail was here to stay so they didn’t waste billions on blue ray.

    • Why don’t you come to country WA where I pay $99.90 a month for a wireless dish on my roof that gives me 50gb a month, 20 peak 30 off peak, at 1.5 megabit (during the half hour a day it actually runs at that speed), with the uploads counting because Telstra is holding out and either not upgrading the system in my area from crappy pair gain copper or when they do upgrade refusing access to ADSL connections unless you pay their exorbitant prices and lock in for a 24 month contract that they automatically renew without asking you at the end and charge over $300 if you want out. It shouldn’t cost you $400 in fees to join Telstra and then pay your way out of their contract so you can churn to another provide just to trick them into giving you a phone line with working internet. And before you tell me to move to the city, no i don’t feel like uprooting my wife and kids and moving to a place where the air burns our lungs, the commute is an hour to work both ways and the rent is doubled just for cheap internet. No thanks tried that for 2 years and decided it wasn’t worth it.

      If you can’t tell I’m just vaguely p****d at your comment above.

      Personally I like having a physical copy. Forget the crap spouted about lovingly holding the box in your arms as you walk off into the sunset arm in arm with your local retailer, I want something that doesn’t take up 8-28 gig of my quota and drive space while taking 4-5 days to download and which I’m guaranteed will still work in 20 years so long as I keep it in a safe place. I want something where if my console craps itself I can get another and not have to wait for half a year’s worth of internet quota in order to be able to use my games again.

      If you think bandwidth is a BS excuse in Australia then you mustn’t have much experience living here.

  • I am all for digital download because its free. I have no idea why people pay for digital downloads when you can get it for free.

    I download and play just about every console game released, because i can and its freely available.

    I buy physical copies of games i love, have cool collectors editions, have peripherals or are just cheap. My games collection would be worth in excess of $10k. How much is your digital games collection worth. Um nothing…

  • Disks are surprisingly cheap to produce, it’s about 30c for a dvd and 70c for a blu-ray. If they went download only, they would have to pay for hosting servers.

  • I like to have the game/movie/cd on my shelf rather than on a HDD… i just prefer it that way. I’ve had too many HDD crashes over the years to want to justify having to keep redownloading stuff. Some stuff is fine, DLC is cool, but the product itself has to come on a disc otherwise im not interested.

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