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Stringer on Sony's difficult migration to digital tech

PlayStation 3 is part of a "new digital strategy to try and create a new software mentality" at Sony, according to the firm's CEO Sir Howard Stringer, who admits that the transition to digital has been tough for the firm.

PlayStation 3 is part of a "new digital strategy to try and create a new software mentality" at Sony, according to the firm's CEO Sir Howard Stringer, who admits that the transition to digital has been tough for the firm.

Speaking to Walt Mossberg in an on-stage interview at the Wall Street Journal's D: All Things Digital conference, Stringer - the first westerner to become the head of Sony - gave some insight into the firm's broader strategy surrounding the console.

"The reason it's expensive [is that] instead of concentrating on just the games player, which would have been done in the past, PlayStation 3 is designed to go somewhere else, where it's the centre of the living room," he explained.

"It's part of the new digital strategy to try and create a new software mentality in Tokyo, because it's quite clear that we've been an analog company migrating to digital with some difficulty," concluded the Welsh-born executive.

Stringer also revealed that the PlayStation 3 is one of the devices which Sony has chosen to focus its efforts on, after significant cutbacks in terms of the number of projects which the firm has in development.

"It's exhausting trying to win on every front," he commented. "Every engineer loves his own product, so if you have an electronic toothbrush with a camera, we would give the same amount of marketing to that as everything else. After a while the company sinks, exhausted, to its knees. Well, we've changed that."

Elsewhere in the interview, Stringer paid tribute to Microsoft chairman Bill Gates, commenting that his rival's "salesmanship" is "so brilliant" that "most of us think, oh my God, he must be right."

"He talked about Vista [being] delayed as if the delay was normal, and then he started mocking me for delaying PS3," Stringer joked. Earlier, the Sony CEO had accidentally referred to recent movie X-Men 3 as Xbox 3 - telling the audience jokingly that the slip-up was a sign of his "obsession."

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Rob Fahey avatar

Rob Fahey

Contributing Editor

Rob Fahey is a former editor of GamesIndustry.biz who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.

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