EXCLUSIVE: Sony Australia who recently met with senior Telstra executives is close to announce a joint relationship that will see Telstra BigPond content distributed on the Sony Playstation Network.
Telstra executive’s claim that Sony “appears to be turning the corner” and that their content network which will supply Internet content to Bravia TV’s, Playstation gaming consoles, Blu ray players and notebooks is significantly ahead of what Samsung, Panasonic and LG can offer in the short turn.
David Thodey Telstra CEO told SmartHouse that he believes that “Sony is turning the corner”.
During the past few years Sony, who has never made a profit from Bravia TV’s or the Sony Playstation has seen profits and market share slump. Now they are banking on 3D and their content network to turn their woes around.
In the US Sony has been testing the release of exclusive content on the SPN network.
In February Sony launched “The Tester” which was a show designed exclusively for the PlayStation Network.
When Wired recently asked how it had performed Susan Panico, Senior Director of the PlayStation Network said “We’ve achieved 2 million views of The Tester, which is pretty much right up there with our top free game demo downloads like God of War 3 or Infamous,” said “What that tells us is this type of content has really high relevancy and entertainment value for our audience.”
What Sony is banking on in Australia is the launch of movies, games and content from partners to steal TV market share back from Samsung and Panasonic.
Panico said, “We already have 40 million PSN registrants, that closely rival’s a major network” While we are not directly competing there, we have a very captivated audience. It makes sense for us to continue to build up our stable of original content. There’s a ton of content out there you can get across various devices–whether it’s your PDA, or your mobile phone, or your PC, or what have you; one of the distinguishing factors that is going to drive device usage is content you can’t get anywhere else.”
A recent survey noted that 78% of PS3 owners are on PSN, the highest percentage of any game console. “There’s a lot of great, rock-solid, fun, entertaining games and other types of content that just aren’t available at other places,” Panico said. “We’re not a hardcore gamers’ proposition. PlayStation Network offers a breadth of content and entertainment that is a very open and welcoming environment for a broader range of users.”
Sony’s exclusive content may be giving them an edge in attach rate, but it is a close race: Xbox Live is only slightly behind with 73% usage, despite over half the users (of a larger install base) paying for the service. Doesn’t that reveal that a paid service works, that Sony should seek such revenue? “We’re free; we don’t gate the online gaming. With our competitor, if you have a device in the household, you have to pay for two subscriptions if you want both your kids to access the network. We don’t do that. Their offering is focused on gating features for the games that they sell, so I think that helps keep their registration rate up,” Panico said.