Phil Harrison Leaving Sorny

Discussion in 'Console Games' started by sikkinixx, Feb 25, 2008.

  1. sikkinixx macrumors 68020

    sikkinixx

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    #1
    http://kotaku.com/360259/phil-harrison-resigning-from-sony

    Quoting Phil:

    "The past 15 years at Sony Computer Entertainment has been the defining journey of my life so far. I am grateful to all the PlayStation family for their incredible support, guidance and friendship. It has been a privilege to serve as part of the team and be inspired by them on a daily basis. I am so proud of everything PlayStation has achieved and will continue to support its future in every way I can."



    Huzzah Sony, let the one ****ing guy who is actually trying to do something with your archaic company pack up and leave.
     
  2. 2nyRiggz macrumors 603

    2nyRiggz

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    #2
    I'll bet its because he question his "brothers" in JPN about the family console thing. This is out of the blue and who do they have to replace him?


    Anywho I still want in game XMB:D

    Bless
     
  3. jaw04005 macrumors 601

    jaw04005

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    #3
    This really irks me. Harrison was the only one at Sony pushing the idea of social gaming. Harrison's Sony Computer Entertainment Europe division is the sole provider of Sony's social games including Buzz, SingStar and EyeToy.

    He has also been the sole Sony spokesman that has been outspoken on Home's delays and lack of public beta.

    I guess Harrison was forced out because of his recent and blunt comments on Sony Japan.

    http://kotaku.com/359493/phil-harrison-a-little-cranky-with-sce-japan

    Not a direct comparison, but you can really see the difference between Sony Japan and SCEE by just looking at their designs. The PS3's XMB interface was designed solely by Sony Japan—computer-like, directory structure, niche features (printing capabilities, etc) and complicated. SingStar's interface was a designed solely by SCEE—slick, beautiful, simple and intuitive.

    It's almost Microsoft vs. Apple within the same company.
     

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  4. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

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  5. BoyBach macrumors 68040

    BoyBach

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    #5
    At the risk of sounding sensationalist: could this be the death knell for Sony Computer Entertainment?

    The PS3 arrived overpriced and late to the party, the sales have never really taken off leaving it far behind the competition, the PR has been an absolute disaster, developers are holding off development until the price is lowered / sales improve (a vicious circle, no?), Kutaragi gone... and now Harrison. It's not a good situation for SCE.
     
  6. jaw04005 macrumors 601

    jaw04005

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    #6
    No. Despite all the gloom and doom predication from everyone, the PS3 has managed to sell more units than the 360 did during its first year despite its high price tag. SCE is here to stay.

    However, I do think Harrison's resignation shows how powerful SCE Japan is compared to SCE America and SCE Europe. No matter how any of the other divisions want to change the PS3 platform, ultimately the PS3 is going to be targeted at what Japanese gamers want, not what American or European gamers want.

    That's an interesting gamble for SCE as a whole.
     
  7. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

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    #7

    Nope. The PS3 is currently regularly outselling the 360 in Europe and should pass it as the dominant console in Europe within a few months (already is the top in several countries). And it's outsold the 360 in Japan since launch, and last month outsold the 360 in the US for the first time.

    It's gaining ground rapidly and if current rates continue could likely overtake the 360 eventually.
     
  8. BoyBach macrumors 68040

    BoyBach

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    #8

    All of the sales figures that I've seen recently show that the PS3 is selling at a similar rate to the Xbox 360 (which is selling at a slower rate than the original Xbox). Add to that the general response from developers at the GDC about the price of the PS3, Sony's apparent reluctance to increase the market demographic (which is in complete contrast to the PS2), the general malaise within the entire Sony company, and now the resignation of the 'Face of Playstation' and I think SCE might be in for some rough times.

    Paradoxically, I think that the recent 'victory' of Blu-Ray will also impact badly on the sales of the PS3, which until now has been enjoying the advantage of being the most keenly priced Blu-Ray player on the market. However, I can see that changing very quickly now that all of the other CE producers only have to produce one type of HD player.

    It's entirely my own conjecture, and I've said it many time before in other threads, but I'm fearful for SCE. I think that they've completely misread the direction that gaming was going and are now suffering - today's news being the most highly visible example to date.
     
  9. Caris macrumors 6502a

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  10. 2nyRiggz macrumors 603

    2nyRiggz

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    #10
    As said earlier the PS3 is doing better than the 360 in its frist year and its outselling the console everywhere now...gaining a lot of gound at 10.5+ million.

    I don't see how blu-ray can effect the PS3 in a bad way but only increase the current marketshare held by the big three. As of now the PS3 is the cheapest BR player and its being eaten up faster than pancakes....by the time those BR players hit the market the PS3 marketshare would have increase at a level to or right under/above MS.

    I think this move was because of his statements about the "social gaming" sector in Japan and his company not pounding the street.

    They(sony) already place Haz in his role....I think they'll be fine but they did lose a good front man.


    Bless
     
  11. pcypert macrumors 6502

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    #11
    I love the 360 a lot. I don't love microsoft, but I love the games, controller, experience, etc of the 360...but the PS3 is growing fast. It will soon overtake the 360 and put the 360 into more of a niche crowd (also a US niche at that). If 360 doesn't have a BluRay player soon that will also come into play. SCE isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

    They're already doing the impossible here in Thailand...selling units despite there not being copied games. It sounds bad, but that's just life over here. It's the first system I've seen sell at all without a crack. Of course when ProEvo sucked on the PS3 I saw people getting back into 360's...pretty fickle, predictable gamers over here :D

    Paul
     
  12. e²Studios macrumors 68020

    e²Studios

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    #12
    If anything the rough times are over for Sony. I see Phil as the type that likes a challenge, he came in to Playstation and did what he had set out to do, now that the name and the system (PS3) is past launch and starting to do well for iteself its time for him to move on to the next challenge whatever that may be. Phil also made waves in Tokyo, he was very good as speaking to a Western audience however he never quite got down speaking to a Japanese audience. He had plenty of head butting with execs in Tokyo, Sony is trying to make progressive changes to their company but ultimatley they are still a typical conservative Japanese company.

    Blu-Ray if anything will be a boost for the PS3, right now it is not only the cheapest but it is also the highest rated BD player on the market. As DVD was to the PS2, BD along with the killer 08/09 titles will be boost the PS3 needs to pass the 360 consistantly in the US and other markets.

    Many European markets the PS3 has already consistantly outsold the 360, in Japan the 360 never really sold at all. Tough times are gone for Sony, I am not sure where your logic is in the post, however I'll respect your right to speak your opinion. There is nothing to fear for SCE.

    Here is a better article, I really have a hate for Craptaku http://www.next-gen.biz/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=9287&Itemid=2

     
  13. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

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    #13
    Then you're only following the NPD sales figures.

    On that subject, let's consider this. The PS3 is in its first year, and it is now selling almost equal numbers to the 360- the 360 is in its second year. So the PS3's sales rate has been steadily increasing at a faster rate than the 360, and the PS3 has done better on its first year than the 360 did.

    Look around the rest of the world for a second- the PS3 dominates the 360 in Japan, and is currently far outselling the 360 in Europe and will be passing its total marketshare soon.

    http://www.ps3fanboy.com/2008/01/24/scee-european-ps3-install-base-to-beat-xbox-360-in-summer/

    Sony's not just going to disappear when they are dominating the 360 in every other country.


    Unless sales take a drastic turn, by this summer the PS3 will have a stronger marketshare in nearly every country except the US, and will probably be matching our outselling the 360 over here on a monthly basis as well.



    Still, no one can touch the Wii :D But there's no need to fear for Sony.


    Doubt it- other Blu-ray players will still sell for a profit, while PS3 will closer to break-even or at a loss. Even if Blu-ray players slightly undercut the PS3, the PS3 has more features and will be the better product- plus, PS3 is still the only Blu-ray player that receives updates when the Blu-ray spec is updated to add extra features, something that the early BD adopters got left out on.
     
  14. jaw04005 macrumors 601

    jaw04005

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    #14
    I'm assuming Sorny is a reference to The Simpsons? Just noticed it.

    By the way, Phil has a said some interesting things throughout his tenure at Sony. Take a look.

    My favorites:

    “The idea of a handheld rivalry with Nintendo is an irrelevance. Those formats don't appear in our planning. It's not a fair comparison; not fair on them, I should stress. That sounds arrogant, maybe, but it's the truth."


    "With the DS, it's fair to say that Nintendo stepped out of the technical race and went for a feature differentiation with the touch screen, but I fear that it won't have a lasting impact beyond that of a gimmick - so the long-lasting appeal of the platform is at peril as a direct result of that."


    "Nintendo knows its target audience, because it has really narrowed that down; and it's pretty much defined by a boy or girl's ability to admire Pokemon."


    "Nobody will ever use 100% of PS3's capability"


    "The PlayStation 3 is a computer. We do not need the PC."

    http://www.gamealmighty.com/story-individual/story/Phil_Harrisons_Greatest_Hits_A_Retrospective/
     
  15. sikkinixx thread starter macrumors 68020

    sikkinixx

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    #15
    I'm glad someone else is as geeky as me :D:D


    But yeah I find this a big bummer. Phil seemed to have an idea of where the industry is moving and Sony studios is making some amazing games (btw, I hate 2ny for getting Patapon before me:mad:) not to mention he is a great speaker and didn't seem totally full of crap (most of the time...)

    Watch him go to Nintendo :eek: or Kotaku had him pegged to go to the drowning Atari according to some rumblings.
     
  16. Agathon macrumors 6502a

    Agathon

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    #16
    You're missing the point a bit. This is a tortoise/hare scenario. I find it a really interesting story.

    The Xbox is a mostly defensive product. Microsoft basically owns PC gaming via the Windows platform. As Mac users, we are pretty familiar with this state of affairs. Microsoft had to get into the console business to protect its gaming software platform from competitors, since people have been talking for years how the future of (a lot of gaming) is consoles. The 360 also represents Microsoft's push into the living room and their desire to see all your computer related entertainment needs operate via Microsoft software. Why else do you think Microsoft would throw away billions of dollars trying to get into the console market?

    The Xbox was an excellent product: the technical superior of the Playstation 2 in almost every respect. Yet Sony had such a head start with the PS2 that the original Xbox was simply obliterated and cost Microsoft a fortune (the PS2 is still selling and making Sony truckloads of cash). The lesson Microsoft learned from that debacle was "release first".

    It was pretty clear what the next gen consoles would be like: hi def graphics, multimedia capabilities and online gaming. Most people also thought that next generation optical media was a given. Microsoft could have waited until HD DVD was ready and released the Xbox 360 with an integrated drive, but that would have meant a more expensive console along with a release that at best would have been a few months ahead of the PS3. Given Sony's dominance in the console market, Microsoft could not afford that since, as noted above, they had to release first in order to have any chance at not taking another hiding.

    So Microsoft's strategy was simple: release a cheaper console as soon as possible and build up sales and a good game library as quickly as possible, so that by the time the more expensive (because of blu ray) PS3 arrives the market perception will be that there is already a winner and network externalities and price would ensure that the PS3 would never really get off the ground. In order to do this they had to sacrifice next gen optical and quality control. The result is the plague of RRODs that have plagued the 360.

    Microsoft were desperate to make it appear that the game was already over by the time the PS3 shipped. That is why they stuffed the channel in 2006 so that they could say they had shipped 10 million consoles. The truth is that many of those consoles sat in storage and Microsoft actually shipped less consoles in 2007 than it did the year before. Microsoft created a glut of consoles in 2006/early 2006 purely to give the impression that the PS3 was already beaten.

    Again, this strategy would only work if the 360 could sell at a massively higher rate from launch than the PS3 did. If both consoles sold at roughly the same rate from launch, then as long as Sony could keep things like that the tortoise would eventually catch the hare as prices came down and the superior hardware of the PS3 became a more attractive deal. Look at it this way: if you graph the cumulative sales of each console from launch, the 360 line had to stay well above the PS3 line in order for it to work. It would have to look like the Wii sales graph plotted next to the PS3 from launch.

    But this didn't happen. Even though the 360 had no next gen competitor and the PS3 had a competitor with a year's head start and a library of excellent games, the PS3 has actually sold more in its first year than the 360 did. The longer this fight goes on, the more the advantage swings to Sony (more games, blu ray, etc.).

    Why did this happen? Well, in large part Nintendo is to blame. Nintendo were smart and knew that they didn't have a hope in hell of competing in the hi def gaming wars, so they made a much cheaper console which was so innovative that buying one was a low risk move for gamers and an attractive move for consumers who wouldn't usually game (even the elderly are playing them). Nintendo has basically cornered the lower end of the market with its cheaper console. That means people who are looking for the cheaper new console will buy a Wii rather than a 360 (and they have... in spades). This is one reason why 360 shipments declined in 2007.

    The second factor is blu ray. From early on it was evident that blu ray was the stronger format. The longer the format war went on, the better for Microsoft. Now that it is over, there is even more reason to buy a PS3. There will be other blu ray players, but they will be nowhere near as good a value as a PS3 to a gamer. The 360 is more expensive once you add wireless and XBL. Microsoft's trick was to make the 360 look cheaper by transferring the cost to add ons and subscription based online. People weren't fooled.

    Right now you can buy a cheap innovative console from Nintendo, or a high tech super hi def machine from Sony, or you can buy something that is a little cheaper than a PS3, but doesn't have next gen optical. Nintendo has squeezed MS out of the low end of the market and Sony is now squeezing them out of the high end.

    You don't have to take my word for this: just look at the sales graphs.

    But it isn't so bad for MS. They are in a much better position with the 360 than they were with the original Xbox. At least in North America the 360 is somewhat of a force, so they are in a much better position for the next round of the console wars than they were for the last one. As it stands, they will have a better game library for most of this year and XBL will be better than PSN until Home is released (and believe me, that will make XBL look pretty tame because the PSN and Home will be free).
     
  17. BoyBach macrumors 68040

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    #18

    Cheers for the interesting response.

    I still feel that SCE is going to struggle and I honestly believe that Phil Harrison's recent public statement and actions are the visible proof that something is very wrong.

    As for PS3 sales, Sony (don't forget that the company is massively in the doldrums in pretty much all of it's marketplaces and has once again failed to meet its profit expectations) needed the PS3 to 'explode'. Or to use your analogy: it needed to be the "hare". Why? Sony relies very much on its Electronic Entertainment and TV divisions to drive its profit and both have failed miserably to do so recently. As I'm sure you know, the fact is that the PS3 drained the company massively in it's pursuit to be the most high end piece of entertainment kit possible and when the initial response was a 'meh', the fate of Kutaragi was sealed and he was quickly 'retired'. As a result Sony now finds itself in a position that it isn't used to - developers are hesitant to work on their 'flagship' console due to the high risk of recuperating their development costs, especially so in Japan - see the recent TGS for proof. (How many games are now multi-platform or even Xbox or Wii exclusives?)

    As for Blu-ray: Sony has deliberately kept the PS3 as the best and cheapest Blu-Ray player on the market (which is very much to the detriment of it's movie production wing) to try and sell as many PS3's to movie lovers in search of the best high-def player as well as to gamers after the latest and greatest piece of tech-porn. Now that the likes of Samsung, LG, Panasonic et al, no longer have to hedge their bets on the 'format war' that situation will change drastically and quickly. It will have an impact on PS3 sales, and conversely will have a positive impact on Sony Columbia sales. Being both a hardware/tech company and a 'content' company is one of the many problems and challenges that Sony faces and has so far not been particularly successful in addressing.

    However, I hope that I'm wrong, as I would like nothing more than a 'cheap' PS3 with a compelling range of games (the chances of which seem to be diminishing rapidly with the removal of Harrison's guiding hand) so that I can finally buy the "latest and greatest piece of tech-porn".
     
  18. e²Studios macrumors 68020

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    #19
    No need to hope, you are wrong ;)
     
  19. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

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    #20
    No, they don't. They are steadily gaining on the 360, but you know what? They deliberately made the console more expensive to be a Blu-ray trojan horse, because they have more to gain by winning the format war.

    While it may have an effect on PS3's sales (which I doubt- PS3 is still the only Blu-ray player not being sold for a big profit), you're looking at completely the wrong angle. Even if it did, it's a good thing. Why? Sony has a HUGE investment in the Blu-ray format. Who cares if the PS3 is no longer the best-selling Blu-ray player? As long as everyone is buying Blu-ray players, Sony won. They sacrificed the PS3's first year in exchange for winning the format war- a worthy trade as far as the company is concerned.

    The other thing is that Blu-ray's victory will mean that the cost will come down rapidly- the PS3 and 360 will cost almost the same in no time, and the PS3 will look like the superior choice.


    Actually, it already does. The 360 + 1 year of Live costs the same as a PS3 (which requires no subscription), and you still lack WiFi and have half the hard drive space.
     
  20. BoyBach macrumors 68040

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    #21

    Yes, they did! Sony would hardly have desired a protracted and painful inception for the PS3. As you pointed out they invested a lot into the PS3 - effectively 'betting the house' on it's success. Success that would have been expected immediately.



    How does Sony 'win' if people are buying Blu-ray players manufactured by LG, Samsung or whoever? Unless, of course, they are being bought solely to play Sony's movies.
     
  21. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

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    #22
    [​IMG]
     
  22. 2nyRiggz macrumors 603

    2nyRiggz

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    #23
    ^Thats one of the funniest internet expression pics I've ever seen....Everytime I see it I just have to laugh.


    Note: Resize it Praxis


    Bless
     
  23. BoyBach macrumors 68040

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    #24

    :confused:

    What has a thespian in a Star Trek uniform got do with this discussion?
     
  24. sikkinixx thread starter macrumors 68020

    sikkinixx

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    #25
    Im fairly certain the Sony gets some royalties on Blu Ray players and maybe even movies (?) so if anything Blu Ray sells, $$$ --> Sony.
     

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