Sony (NYSE:SNE) Playstation’s Problems in China


In China the censors are as tough as one can imagine them to be. Apple (NYSE:AAPL) was having trouble with the authorities as well in trying to get approval for launching its iphone 6 and iphone 6 plus. Not only that but Facebook is banned in China and users have come up with their local version of a website giving Facebooks functionality. So, Sony (NYSE:SNE) has to be vary before launching its Playstation 4 console for gaming which is highly sought after throughout the world.

The plan currently is to launch it in China next month and being one of the biggest markets for Sony’s (NYSE:SNE) Playstation in terms of size Sony (NYSE:SNE) is trying to make sure everything goes according to plan. China is the world’s third largest gaming market in terms of absolute dollar value. This Thursday Sony (NYSE:SNE) made the official announcement of launching the Sony Playstation 4 after NewYear on the 11th of January 2015.

However, in terms of the competition with Microsoft’s Xbox, Sony (NYSE:SNE) will come in a very late second as Xbox has already been released in China. Why you may ask is all the rush about? After a very long wait of around 14 years, foreign products in the category of gaming consoles are now finally allowed to be sold legally in China. Black markets are not the only places which will now sport the latest gaming offerings.

Sony (NYSE:SNE) would price its Playstation 4 at around $470 dollars in China and the same could be purchased in the United States for $400 only. The price choice might be due to the transportation costs incurred while transporting the consoles manufactured at the Sony (NYSE:SNE) facilities. Or it could be a strategy to keep the product from being transported in the Black market anymore by offering a price which is more than the US so the selling price in the Black market would be too much to afford.

However, the biggest thorn in Sony’s (NYSE:SNE) side will be trying to get the censor board in approving the games quickly. The titles available in China however will be limited as the government wants to keep the control tight in terms of foreign software, in whichever shape it is found. Apart from that, there is no set date as to when all of the titles in Sony’s (NYSE:SNE) original Playstation 4 collection would be offered.

The company spokesperson in these matters, Hiroyuki Oda, who is leading the Asian business for Sony (NYSE:SNE) confirmed that they are trying to push the government in approving as much content as possible for Playstation 4 users. Almost 30 titles have been approved already and much more are in the pipeline.