Sony Computer Entertainment man Kaz Hirai has said they don't regret including Blu-ray with the PS3, from a "gaming standpoint" it made pure sense.
The SCE boss does admit, time machine permitting, they "would have not gone" for a global simultaneous release. He disses Xbox 360 and Wii as "five year" life cycles at most.
"Purely from a gaming standpoint there was no other choice for us," Hirai told The Guardian, in response to the Blu-ray question.
"Last year's Metal Gear Solid 4 was pushing 50GB as it was," he continued. "If it was on DVD it would have been a 6 disc set. The packaging and cost would have been prohibitive and it would have been hugely inconvenient to consumers."
"Conceptually it may make sense to remove the Blu-Ray drive but in reality it doesn't make sense," explained Hirai. "Also we never want to be in the position where countries without super fast broadband connections are locked out of the PlayStation business because the PS3 has gone download only."
The launch of the PlayStation 3 was one of many troubles and if given the gift of hindsight at the time, Hirai and his band of Sony bigwigs would have done it a little different.
"Looking back if we could have done it again we probably would have not gone for the simultaneous worldwide launch," he said, though points to ultimately how a console finishes is the important thing - nodding toward the PS2.
"For other consoles which have a five year life cycle it is much easier to judge performance after two years," said Hirai. "But for us, with the 10 year life cycle we have, it is premature to judge after such a short time."
"The PS3 is only a quarter way through a ten-year life cycle. So we want to make sure that we are supporting and exciting the core gamers."
All of Sony's competitors are "looking at a five year lifecycle" he notes. "The new console comes out and the old one is immediately disregarded. We tend to take a longer term view of how we manage the platform and the software titles that come out at any given time."
Are Sony the King of product life cycles? Microsoft have been keen to point out that continued software evolution is going to help extend the life of the Xbox 360 for many years to come.
Hirai: Rivals only "five year life cycle", "no other choice" but Blu-ray
11 June 2009 | By Simon Priest