Monday, May 08, 2006

PlayStation 3 Debuts Tonight

If I played video games, I might care. But happily I've been able to avoid that time-waster for years. (I barely leave my house as it is.) You can't buy one till the fall, but they'll be letting conventiongoers play at least a handful of new games and hopefully get enough buzz going that people will wait rather than buying an Xbox. One amazing stat: video gaming grosses more than Hollywood at the box office. But ONLINE gaming is getting massive too. The biggest hit there is World of Warcraft. It has six million subscribers (who pay a monthly fee to compete with thousands of others online at any time) and will gross $1 billion by itself this year. That's "Titanic" level money.

Just as importantly, the new PS3 will play Blu-Ray DVDs, the new DVD format competing with the better-named but less flashy HD-DVD. Both formats forget one important point: people are not going to pay a premium to switch from DVD to newer more expensive DVD players with titles that cost more in the store. Make these new DVDs JUST AS CHEAP as current DVDs and you will succeed.

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