Sony Ericsson releases Android powered phone … then I end up talking about PS3

Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10

Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10


Two days ago I posted about Android catching up to the iPhone
and wished for an Android powered PSP. I wrote about this before here and here. Well it does not seem far fetched now with the new Android-powered Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10. Engadget has more on the pre-production model here and GIZMODO here. Looks like Sony still has some few hurdles to overcome to deliver on this phone. However, poking around online, I found the following piece:


Sony Ericsson’s head of portfolio planning, Steve Walker, said that this is just the start, and that in future we’ll see closer integration with other Sony products, though he wouldn’t comment as to whether the PS3 was a possibility, via Remote Play like the Sony Ericsson Aino.

Given that Sony barely released the PSP GO recently, I don’t see them investing in a new handheld console-phone combo platform right now. Coupled with the upcoming PSP versions of LittleBigPlanet, Assassin’s Creed and Rock Band, the PSP is getting back some attention that has been focused on the PS3 for the past couple of years.

Lets look at some numbers. According to Joystiq here, Sony has lost close to $4.7 Billion dollars on the PS3 so far. Also according to VGChartz, Sony has sold 25.74Million PS3 units so far compared to 52.31Million PSP units. The Xbox360 launched a year earlier than the PS3 and their total sales so far is 32.78Million units. That’s not too bad. By end of April next year, I think we will have a good idea of the PS3’s overall performance in this generation. It seems to me that by April 2010, Sony will have shown most of their cards for the PS3. I say April 2010, because FF XIII, God Of War III, and Gran Turismo 5 will all be out by then (MAG, Heavy Rain, and The Last Guardian may all be out by then too). These titles should enable Sony to capture a lot of the PS2 users back to their side. Knowing that the PS2 sold over 138 million units as of August 18, 2009, the potential to sell more PS3s is huge.

If this generation cycle manages to stay for 10 years, there is a big chance for Sony to recoup its losses on the PS3. I got to all these numbers just to see if its feasible financially to create a PSP phone.

Android catching up to the iPhone – anyone else to step up?

iPhone vs Droid

iPhone vs Droid

Droid

Droid

After reading Mobile Crunch’s review of the Motorolla Droid device vs the iPhone, it finally seems like someone was able to catch up with Apple(feature wise).

Each phone platform has such tremendous merits. Androids got better navigation; the iPhone has a better browser. Androids got unbeatable expandability and flexibility; the iPhone OS is mind-numbingly easy to use and the rate of growth and drive behind the App Store is simply explosive.

Samsung is also making Android powered phones and we will soon see more Hardware makers jumping on the Android bandwagon.
I wrote before here
and here how it would be awesome to have a Sony phone with an open operating system platform like Android. It finally seems like that its viable for Sony to compete with a unique value offering. Now that Sony has adopted the “It only does everything” line for the PS3, they should do the same with the PSP. A powerful handheld console like the PSP coupled with a smart phone functionality would be something I would buy in a heart beat.

Sony!!! Should I buy their stock?

Before I left the US, I had a good chat with several friends including Mark Deloura about the future of Sony and their potential next steps and where their market is headed. Now that I’m in Tokyo, I got to attend the Sony Developer Conference and saw up close and personal some of their efforts from their mother land office.

Here some interesting evidence that Sony is heading the right direction:
– More PSN offerings including
– PS1 and PS2 games
– General media content including first party exclusive programming like Qore and many other media offerings from 3rd parties
– Enhanced PS1 and PS3 re-releases on Blu-Ray. For example the God Of War 1&2 games for the PS3(announced here)
– PS3 price cut and large hard drive capacity along with a slimmer (and faster model)

– A great line up of exclusive and non-exclusive games scheduled for 2009 and 2010 including: Heavy Rain (exclusive), Final Fantasy XIII (exclusive to Sony in Japan), Final Fantasy Vs XIII (exclusive to Sony everywhere), The Agency, God Of War III (exclusive), Uncharted 2(exclusive), Assassin’s Creed 2(non-exclusive) and Assassin’s Creed PSP(exclusive obviously)
– Sony is investing in new technologies like Facial and photo recognition (announced here) also as we know they have demonstrated the Sony motion controller

– Potential PS Phone (check here and here)
– Sony will introduce 3D LCDs by 2010 (check here)

Well after all that, I still have not answered the question. Is it a good time to buy Sony stock? I think the answer is yes. Its based on evidence that Sony has been trying to cut a lot of fat and increase their PS3 sales. Now the issue is that Sony is a huge company and their gaming sector is only a portion of their business so if they do well in games, that does not mean that the company will do well overall. I would like to add more analysis here but I gotta head to CEDEC tomorrow. So what do you think?

If I had the power to design the new PSP (iPSP)

Reuters recently reported that Sony is working on a Phone PSP. As I wrote a while back here, my dream PSP will be a combination of a smart phone and a gaming device.

Sony announced recently that its working on an Android powered Walkman. Also Sony announced that its open to non-gaming applications for the PSP. All of that tells that something good is cooking behind the scenes. An Android powered PSP would be awesome!!

Imagine of you had a GPS + Cell Phone + Handheld Gaming Console + Digital Camera + Record & Play Audio/Video + Browse the Internet + Email + Open & Edit Files all on the same device. Who needs Netbooks if you have such a device. You need to make sure that all your data is backed up so everything you have should be duplicated on a Cloud somewhere. I would use the Tegra 650 Mobile Graphics card from Nvidia. Getting 1080p HD quality on a mobile device will be a killer. It will be a battery killer too 🙂

Now that is a kitchen sink mobile device I would buy!

Sony making a Walkman with Android!!

AndroidWalkmanYes, finally!! Sony is adopting Google’s flavored Linux Android for a Walkman device. This is exciting because we might see an Android powered PSP at some point which might look like my dream PSP. Sony Japan is not too keen on making a PSP cell phone but if this new Android Walkman succeeds, things might change.

Originally reported here.

E3 next week and expectations heating up

Now that E3 is almost back to its glory, all kinds of speculations and expectations started coming out. Even new trailers for games started showing up already (Check the Bayonetta trailer below). Although, I would rather wait until the big three conferences actually announce what they are working on, I can’t help ignore all the media buzz around the conference.

In previous posts, I wrote about what I would like to see in a potential new PSP, and the next gen of video game consoles.

So here is a summary of the hot potential news:

Hardware
Sony:
– New UMD-less PSP or even a whole new PSP
– A new PS3 redesign and/or price cut and/or new bundles

Microsoft:
– Potential new bundles with Xbox Live accounts, Games, new peripherals …etc

Nintendo:
– Nothing new?

Motion Control:

Both Sony and Microsoft are expected to announce a new motion controller that could be camera based. Recent media buzz talked about Microsoft potentially using the motion control technology developed by Canesta, a company that develops 3-D sensors that allow consumer electronic devices to see your gestures. Microsoft also has a definitive agreement to buy a company called 3DV Systems which has been working on a 3-D depth camera that can detect motion and position which is much more accurate than the Wii game controller. There are rumors that Microsoft is also talking to Prime Sense about licensing their 3D-Depth Camera. The funny thing is that Microsoft had an internal team try to develop their own tech but it decided not to go with it.

Nintendo obviously has the lead in this field but would better technology from Sony or Microsoft affect them? Well, after 50+ Million Wii units sold, I doubt it. Sony and Microsoft lost this round at least in terms of numbers sold.


Games:

Sony: God of War III, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, MAG, Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time, Heavy Rain: The Origami Killer, and Pixeljunk Shooter. Pushing more PSN titles
Microsoft: Alan Wake, Halo 3: ODST, Forza Motorsport 3, and a potential new Peter Molyneux game. ???Maybe MGS4 for the Xbox360???. Other new DLC
Nintendo: Metroid Prime Trilogy, Sin and Punishment 2, and Wii Sports Resort. Other new Mario and/or Zelda games. New DSi titles?