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Forums - Sony Discussion - Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida calls console gaming niche


What you think of Yoshida calling console gaming niche?

Surprised 16 39.02%
not surprised 12 29.27%
neutral 13 31.71%

The surprise collaboration with Sony and Microsoft got the gaming world talking last week. While it is focused on cloud-based gaming and streaming infrastructure, it hasn’t stopped people from speculating just what it means for the future of the industry that two of the key players are working together. Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida took to investors to explain a little more about the partnership, and where he sees it leading the company.

At Investors Relations Day, Yoshida talked in great length about how Sony has struggled with some of their online infrastructure in the past and that use of Microsoft’s Azure makes sense to improve that as streaming will be a big part of the industry’s future.

“We’ve been working with streaming services over the last five years and there are various difficult aspects. The network latency, for one. Some examples I could cite, for instance, the typical means of minimizing latency is the placement of servers on the edge closer to users, but moving servers closer to one group of users can mean increasing latency for another group of users.

And also, there will be an encoding process at the very end, and how we can minimize the time for compression is another challenge. And also, in order to make it a viable business, what would be the business model? Our service is a subscription model now, but depending on the game, one could be played for fifty or a hundred hours and for someone playing one game like this, what is the advantage of a subscription service per month, the all-you-can-play type of model? So in terms of technology and services, there are various aspects we would like to look into with Microsoft going forward, especially in terms of streaming solutions. We would like to proceed through collaboration.”

Hinting at the inevitable streaming focused future, he also cites it as an important evolution the company will have to go through as console gaming, as we know it, is “niche,” and streaming will open up opportunities that aren’t as readily available with dedicated devices. This is something already in its infancy with PlayStation Now, something Sony has used to dip its toes in going beyond a single device.

“As we speak, we provide, as I said, the immersive business and experience is something we would like to continue to place importance on. If you look at the game industry as a whole, the console market is not a major market, rather it’s a niche market if you will. But for core gamers, immersive experiences are something we would like to value. In this respect, for the time being, the console as something that brings about computing functionality to the users is very important, but on the other hand, technology will progress and so as I said today, the Remote Play and PlayStation Now, the streaming services will be worked on in parallel, that is what we are doing at this moment.”

Who knows where all of this will ultimately lead, but one thing is for sure, Sony has the future in mind.

hmm So. Yoshida san thinks it's niche wasn't expecting that?  I think Phil spencer wouldn't surprise me calling it niche too ?

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Last edited by dx11332sega - on 22 May 2019

I game on all consoles and PC

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In today's enetrtainment climate just about everything is niche except Game of Thrones and Marvel Cinematic Universe. Even Smart Phones and their infrastructure are just comprised of tiny niches. That could just mean that he sees a larger pie to eat and isn't satisfied with the current ecosystem of customers. That's called greed or good business strategy depending on who you talk to.

Xbox and Playstation have become computers with controllers that are locked to exclusive stores. I'd like to see them become more niche, so we can either get all developers on the same platform (PC), or else get some truly innovative consoles like the Nintendo Switch.

I would say consoles are mainstream and streaming will be niche for another generation or two. They just want to go streaming because it has potential to reach more customers in future without relying on dedicated machines. I expect streaming to be shoddy for awhile. I might give streaming a try in 2030 if I'm still alive.  Eventually it will be like what Netflix did to blu ray and overtake.  That will be awhile though.

The amount of people not playing games vastly outnumber those who do. Of those who do, the number playing games on something other than a console is in the billions.

In the larger picture, console gaming is definitely a niche.

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If console gaming is niche, what would be this service if it ends up having an even smaller audience than the audience playing on consoles?

Nintendo is selling their IPs to Microsoft and this is true because:

The console market is not a niche in the global games market, it's a segment. According to estimates, it accounted for 25% of the global games market in 2018. 'Niche' is a term that should be reserved for very small or tiny segments, because otherwise the term becomes pointless and virtually everything turns into a niche as soon as it doesn't account for the majority of something.

Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

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Absolute nonsense, its bigger than ever. microsoft is not competitive but is not doing too bad, nintendo has made a sucessful comeback and sony have had a very impressive generation with it's exclusives selling far more than in the past. hardware and sofware sales this gen are anything but niche.

Yeah, just keep pushing the "all-streaming future" narrative until it crashes down fast ... so short sighted as always.

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I don't know. Niche is a bit too much. Console gaming is not like smartphones or laptops. It's not as mainstream as those. On the other hand, console gaming is a big as it always were, in my opinion, and it's not a tiny market. Games are making money as much as film blockbusters.

Everybody knows GTA and Pokemon. Of course GTA is also a PC game and could survive without consoles, yes, but still.

Perhaps he's comparing consoles to the game market overall. It's like playing The Last of Us is niche compared to Candy Crush. But still, I wouldn't call it niche.

Perhaps, my understanding of niche is wrong.

God bless You.

My Total Sales prediction for PS4 by the end of 2021: 110m+

When PS4 will hit 100m consoles sold: Before Christmas 2019

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