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Sony confident with PS3 plans for 2009

Peter Dille hints at a possible price drop later this year

Sony Computer Entertainment America is lining up an aggressive strategy that may include a price reduction for the PlayStation 3 later this year, as well as a reaffirmation of Sony's ten year commitment to the platform, according to an interview with senior vice president of marketing Peter Dille, reports Gamasutra.

Dille says that Sony is confident in its marketing plan for the remainder of 2009, telling Gamasutra that "We've talked about this next year being the most aggressive marketing year in PlayStation's history. It clearly falls into the 'we can't comment on rumour and speculation,' but we're confident in our plan, and we'll just leave it at that."

In response to inquiries about a possible price reduction for the console, Dille said "We're not going to make a price move for PS3; we're not going to be packing five free games into a promotional strategy." In a follow-up question, Dille hinted at the possibility of a cut later this year, saying, "Well, what I've said is that it's not going to drop in price today."

Though Sony's plans for 2009 have not yet been revealed to the press, many third party publishers and retailers were given details at February's invite-only Destination PlayStation event.

"I think it might be fair to say that some people came into Destination PlayStation curious about what our plans were," said Dille. "I think they all left really fired up about the year ahead because, once they understood what our plans were, we didn't hear any of that grousing that you're talking about - certainly not from the folks that attended."

Dille also stressed Sony's commitment for a ten-year business strategy for the console, saying "I hope that people know by now that we are serious when we talk about 10-year product lifecycles. I don't know; maybe sometimes guys in your business think that it's spin. If it were spin, you wouldn't have PS1 and PS2 doing it; we're the only company that's ever done it."

Many third parties and retailers have called for a reduction in cost for the PS3 console, with major US retailer GameStop's CEO Don Matteo saying earlier this month that the USD 399 price point "is clearly an issue in this economy." One would suspect that Matteo was present at the Destination PlayStation event in February, though his comments, while clearly calling for a reduction, do not reveal any knowledge of one in the foreseeable future.

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Frank Cifaldi