Sony on why it won't hinder PS4 used games--flexibility creates value

PlayStation boss Jack Tretton says ability to freely resell games creates value in the initial purchase; PS4 won't require online check-in because many countries don't have stable broadband access.

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The PlayStation 4 is a consumer-focused machine, and that's why it will not limit used games or require users to connect to the Internet once a day, according to executive Jack Tretton.

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"We're most concerned about the consumer. And we really appeal to consumers on a worldwide basis," Tretton told Bloomberg TV. "And I think in the United States, we realize there's a high degree of broadband adoption, but we're in a lot of countries where people don't have the ability to connect on a daily basis and we want to appeal to consumers worldwide."

Speaking about used games, Tretton said the ability to freely share titles with friends or resell them to retailers creates value for the initial purchase. If this flexibility were to be taken away, consumers would be less likely to buy games, he argued.

"The other thing as it relates to the ownership of the game, if people pay a lot of money for that, they equate the value with the flexibility they have in that," Tretton said. "To do with it as they choose; to give it to their friends, sell it to their friends, trade it in to another retailer; that creates value in the initial purchase that they make."

Competitor Microsoft has adopted a policy for the Xbox One that requires users to "check in" with a broadband connection once a day. In addition, though the system will allow used games, decisions will ultimately be left up to individual publishers.

Also in the interview, Tretton spoke about the PS4's design. He called it "beautiful" and "very, very sexy."

"People looked at it, and their jaw just dropped," he said.

Regarding the PS4's $400 price point, a full $100 below Microsoft's $500 Xbox One, Tretton said Sony hit the sweet spot with balancing technological power and a consumer-friendly price point.

"The goal is always to reach the most consumer-friendly price point so you can drive volume as quickly as possible," Tretton said. "But you walk that line between wanting to deliver the ultimate technological experience at a reasonable price and we think we hit a really nice chord at $399 with PlayStation 4."

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