Ever since the launch of the PlayStation 3, those who took
exception to the console’s relatively high price criticized Sony’s decision to
include an expensive Blu-ray Disc drive.
While developers such David
Jaffe (God of War, Twisted Metal)
wanted to do without the drive, Sony itself has said that the decision to
include Blu-ray Disc hardware is the smartest
decision it has ever made.
Now with the Blu-ray Disc format looking stronger than ever
with the support of Warner Bros., the PlayStation 3 appears very well
positioned as multimedia machine that appeals to more than just the gaming
Along with consumers, Sony felt the pain of its high console
price at the time of the PlayStation 3 launch in November 2006. iSuppli
estimated that the initial cost of manufacture for the console was $840.35
for the 60GB model.
Since then, however, Sony has managed to close the gap
considerably on its loss on every unit sold. Nikko Citigroup’s Kota Ezawa,
quoted by BusinessWeek,
says that each PS3 costs Sony around $400 to manufacture. Ezawa estimates that SCEI
will lose $1.4 billion this fiscal
year, following last year's $2.1 billion loss.
The falling price
of PlayStation 3 components is thanks to the increase
in yield and supply of blue-violet laser diodes used in the high-definition
optical drive in the console. Another large help in reducing costs was the Cell
Broadband Engine chip’s shrink
SCEI chief Kazuo
Hirai at CES told the media that the PlayStation division of the company aims
to be profitable
starting next fiscal year.