PS4 China Delay Unrelated to PSN Attack, Sony Says

Andrew House offers explanation for why Sony delayed the PS4's launch in China just days before it was scheduled to arrive.

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Speaking with The Wall Street Journal on Friday, PlayStation's top boss offered more clarity into Sony's eleventh-hour decision to delay the PlayStation 4's launch in China.

Sony Computer Entertainment president Andrew House said the decision to delay the PS4's launch was due to "a request from the authorities to make an adjustment to the business plan." It had nothing to do with the recent massive cyberattack against Sony Pictures or the DDoS attack against the PlayStation Network over the Christmas holiday, House stressed.

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"It's completely not associated with any of those issues or indeed any kind of Japan-China relations," House said.

Sony had expected to launch the PS4 in China on January 11. House declined to provide a new date for when the console will go on sale in the country, which only recently lifted its decade-long ban on consoles. China banned game consoles in 2000, citing potential harm to the physical and mental development of children.

House added that the PS4 delay has no effect on Sony's partnership with Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group to produce the consoles for China. However, the delay does jeopardize Sony's "go-to-market strategy" for the PS4, House said, though he did not offer any more details about what he meant.

House went on to say that he is confident that the PS4 launch snag will be overcome shortly, adding that the delay should have no effect on Sony's overall PS4 sales expectations for the year.

Sony rival Microsoft also ran into some issues with the rollout of its newest console in China. The Xbox One suffered a last-minute delay, going on sale September 28 instead of its originally scheduled September 23 launch date.

With more gamers in China than the total United States population, China is a potentially lucrative market for Sony. However, the country's censorship rules could impact PlayStation's business in the market, along with Microsoft's.

When it is finally released in China, the PS4 will sell for 2,899 RMB ($468), while the PS Vita will go for 1,299 RMB ($210). In addition to support from Sony's internal studios, a total of 70 third-party developers and publishers are lined up to create a "steady stream" of games for the Chinese market, Sony said in December.

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