Sony said on Thursday it would postpone the launch of the "Home" virtual community service for its PlayStation 3 game console to early next year.
The 3D "Home" online service, in which players can create and "own"
characters and content, was originally scheduled for launch this
Sony Computer Entertainment, the video game unit of Sony, said it
was postponing the launch to improve product quality.
"This is going to be a worldwide service that needs to offer a wide
range of functions required in Japan, in the U.S., in Europe and in
Asia," Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) Chief Executive Kazuo Hirai
said in a keynote speech at the Tokyo Game Show 2007.
"We aim to launch this as something that can meet expectations of
people all over the world."
Hirai did not mention widely anticipated price cuts for the PS3,
instead saying the firm plans to strengthen its software lineup to
As part of that effort, SCE said it has acquired British software
developer Evolution Studios and its subsidiary, Bigbig Studios, for
an undisclosed sum.
Evolution created "MotorStorm," a million seller title for the PS3.
Sony's PlayStation and PlayStation 2 dominated the global game
industry for about a decade from the mid-1990s, but Sony was one
year behind Microsoft in releasing its latest console. The PS3 has
lagged far behind Nintendo's Wii in monthly sales due to a lack of
hit game products and its high price.
On the hardware side, SCE said it would offer a new controller with
a vibration function for the PS3. Called Dualshock3, the new controller will have the same basic design also met in the original Playstation controller, while it will keep the high-precision, motion sensitive six-axis sensitive system.
The price for the new controller, which will become available in
November in Japan and next spring in North America and Europe, was
not immediately available.
The PS3 with a 20-gigabyte hard disk drive sells for 49,980 yen in
Japan, roughly twice as much as Nintendo's Wii.