Streaming, lifestyle technology and virtual reality.
The future of Sony's PS4 is centered around three key tenets: development of streaming technology like PlayStation Now, sensor technology like wearable lifestyle and fitness devices, and the exploration of virtual reality through devices like Project Morpheus.
"There are two or three potential directions that our industry and our form of entertainment could go," House began. "Our acquisition of Gaikai and our commitment to PlayStation Now is again very much in the spirit of looking at how the distribution method is going to shift over time.
There are two or three potential directions that our industry and our form of entertainment could go.
"I've been paying attention to what's been happening to the music business and I think someone told me recently that the people involved in the music industry are maybe a fifth of what they were ten years ago. If you look at the stats on music streaming last year right now, last year was the first year that music downloads actually decreased year-on-year. It's only by six percent, but it's on the downturn. Streaming, meanwhile, is something like 30 percent up.
"No one can make perfect predictions about where these things trend but it says to me that convenience of streaming has been embraced first in music, now in video and television, and it's going to play some role in our business as well. Our goal, rather than have the future dictated to us is to try and be a pioneer, shaping the way it goes. That's what we're trying to do with PlayStation Now."
"We're also seeing a revolution in the development of sensor technology, whether it's lifestyle fitness management or the trend for wearables, I think we're on the cusp right now of seeing a huge number of these different sets of technology get down to the physical size and low cost where they're going to be very ubiquitous," he continued. "This could play some sort of role in a new generation of interactive experiences.
"Then the third one is virtual reality. There's just a sense that we have that the technology is again reaching that tipping point, it's on the cusp of being something that really delivers you true presence, of feeling like you're in another world. When that's delivered it's really magical and I think that how far, how large, how quickly that's going to become a major part of what we do remains to be seen, but we definitely think the magic of that experience leads you wanting to pursue it."
While Cerny, for his part, felt that the future is difficult to predict even five or six years ahead, citing the fact that the tenets listed by House were certainly not on the table when the PS3 was released, he suggested Sony is in a good place to role with the punches. The trio of House, Cerny and Shuhei Yoshida have been working in the same spheres with Sony for nigh on 20 years now, which he likened to the amount of time key Nintendo players have racked up. The hope therefore, for him at least, is that the knowledge of where they've been will clarify how to get where they want to go. We'll have more from Develop shortly,
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