Thursday, December 22, 2011

Sony's only weakness is.....

Superman has Kryptonite, Green Lantern has the color yellow, Martian Manhunter has fire. Sony apparently has themselves as their main weakness.  Let's look at the news footage, shall we? I'll be commenting as we go...

The PlayStation Vita went on sale in Japan at the weekend. Owners have described unresponsive touchscreens, crashes and freezes. 
Glitches in new consoles are not unusual, but experts have been surprised by the number of related postings sent to Twitter and YouTube. 
Local reports suggest over 300,000 devices were sold over two days.
The console boasts a gyroscope, accelerometer and electronic compass beneath its 5in (12.7cm) OLED touchscreen as well as front and rear mounted cameras. 
           XXSP: Gat damn! {/sarcasm}
However, complaints of technical issues have threatened to take the shine off the launch, prompting the company to issue a statement on its PlayStation site. 
"Currently, our information centre regarding PlayStation Vita as well as our usual customer service centre are receiving many enquiries. We apologise if your phone isn't connected straight away," it said. 
"Some issues regarding PlayStation Vita can be addressed by simple procedures at home," it added, going on to provide a list of questions and answers to tackle problems including the console refusing to start-up. 
XXSP: I'm sure there were in depth questions like " battery?"
In addition the firm has released a firmware update that users must install if they wish to be able to continue going online with the device. 
Experts said that other manufacturers had bounced back after facing similar early setbacks. 
"One of the biggest problems Microsoft faced with its early Xbox 360 consoles were 'Red Ring of Death' failures - but the company overcame them and the system is now one of the best-selling in the world," said Christopher Dring from MCV, a video games industry magazine.Sales survey 
          XXSP: Keep in mind that that was over a period of years, not overnight.
Japanese publisher Enterbrain suggests 321,400 devices were sold over the handheld's first two days on sale. Sony has yet to release official figures. 
The PlayStation Vita will miss the festive shopping season in the US and Europe
If the estimate proves accurate it would fall short of Nintendo's 371,000 3DS tally during its launch weekend in February. 
However, analysts noted that Sony had to contend with cold weather conditions which may have put off some shoppers. 
          XXSP: I seriously wish you could see my "bullshit" face right now.
They also highlighted the fact that Nintendo's sales had slumped a few weeks after the 3DS went on sale.  
XXSP: Nintendo also had an earthquake to blame....little harsher than cold weather..
Sony hopes to avoid that fate by releasing its device alongside a strong line-up of 24 titles. These include the latest addition to the Uncharted series and a new version of LittleBigPlanet. 
A spokesman for Sony said there would be 33 games by the time it puts the two models of the device on sale in the UK in February. One will connect to the internet via 3G and wi-fi, the other just through wi-fi. 
"We are incredibly pleased with the success of the Japanese launch of PlayStation Vita in which all pre-orders were immediately sold out and that enthusiasm has continued since launch with sales well on track," said David Wilson, head of PR, UK at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. 
           XXSP: PR damage control, check.
"We are confident we will continue to accelerate the momentum as we approach the European launch on February 22nd." 
The handhelds will be released in the US, Canada and Latin America at the same point. Although they will miss out on this year's Christmas shopping season, experts said Sony might benefit from the staggered roll-out. 
"I don't think Sony would like to describe Japan as a test-run, but it does give them an opportunity to fix problems with the consoles," said Mr Dring. 
"That should be reassuring to people in the UK and Europe thinking of buying the devices."
This is just unreal. I don't even know what to say concerning this that hasn't been said before. Sure, Sony could play this out by saying that Microsoft and Nintendo have gone through similar issues, though they grew because of them, but let's face it. MS is literally made of money, and Nintendo's issues were more to do with a natural disaster, and people having issues with price. If this is the glitch that is supposedly bricking Vitas..

an example of  screen staining issues on the launch Vitas

then that is just  unacceptable. The PS3 launch, the PSP launch, the PSP GO launch, and now this. Each one has had large flaws which make people question the level of intelligence that the higher-ups there are working with. It doesn't really make a lick of sense that Sony can consistently botch every launch they've had post PS2, and regardless of whether the points made were valid or not, This still makes the company look bad in hindsight. The real question is, if this is exactly the desired result of these reports?.

Let's look at this article from the guardian, and i'll post the quotes that i'm going to cover.

While it acknowledges that a few new PS Vita owners may have experienced isolated malfunctions, it is adamant that users are experiencing no more problems than would be expected given that 325,000 units of the handheld console were sold during its launch weekend in Japan. 
David Wilson, head of UK PR at Sony Computer Entertainment, said: "The PS Vita has had a terrific launch and sold in large numbers. We're annoyed with these stories, because we can't find any evidence of widespread glitches. 
"The stories even said that Sony has issued an apology for PS Vita glitches, which simply isn't true – there's an apology on our Japanese website for people who are having trouble getting through to our technical help line, but that's it. 
"And there's a page showing standard procedures for powering the PS Vita on and off, which has been on our site since before the launch, which has been presented in some news stories as a means of solving the alleged glitches." 
Sony appears to have been a victim of internet Chinese whispers, combined with an element of its Japanese website getting lost in translation. 
It has issued a firmware update, but that is only to be expected with a new and complex handheld console such as the PS Vita. There is also a YouTube video showing a PS Vita with a frozen screen , which has been replicated in various places on the web, but that hardly constitutes a welter of malfunctions.
One wonders whether the Sony-haters who hacked the PlayStationNetwork earlier in the year and aimed a barrage of bile at the company (including threats to senior executives) are up to their old tricks again. 
Despite the negative reports, the PS Vita's future would still appear to be bright: the 325,000 units sold in its opening weekend represents a solid if unspectacular start.
Now, there is a strong possibility that this could be really what's going on. If this is an attempt from other companies or just a group of disgruntled fans to use F.U.D (Fear Uncertainty Doubt) to deter people from purchasing Vitas, then it's a damn good ploy. Using Sony's track record of botched launches, and the network  shutdown fiasco of last summer to construct a tale of widespread broken handhelds is damn sinister.. If that's really what's going on, that is.

But then again this makes me wonder about another scenario; what if  (and this is just an idea, not a fact) Sony is purposely allowing these statements to generate their own buzz about their product? 325,000 units is hardly anything to gush about, considering. It isn't holding a candle to the 3DS' albeit, so-so launch period, either, so how do we get people talking about the Vita? make a few little incidents and hit the forums. Fake or not it would still get people talking for sure. If you've read or watched "Thank you for not smoking" you could see how people can possibly spin things to a company's advantage or disadvantage.

Either way this goes, it's going to be a fairly interesting thing to keep eyes on come February, and once again we're learning that it never really pays to be an early adapter of anything technological...

Game on.

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