Duncan Cross, head of games at supermarket giant Asda, strongly believes that the Sony console needs a helping hand to fulfil its potential.
“I think for us and for Asda’s customers there’s no doubt that we’d like to have seen some price movement on PS3,” he told MCV. “The US have got a cut and we’ve got the games bundle but it’s just not the same. I think the console needs an extra something to really get it up to full speed.”
Retail contemporary Martin Baxter, head of games at Choices UK, has also called for a cut to galvanise sales before Q4 – but not yet. “I think the bundle will be enough to keep sales going in the short term, although ultimately a strong line-up of software and a price drop pre-Christmas would be key to trading through the peak period,” he told MCV.
“But our sales have more than doubled since the new Starter Pack was introduced. I think the value added message is a strong one and a price drop at this stage would not be the best move as this may send a negative message to the customers out there.”
But it’s not just retail concerned about the price; SCi CEO Jane Cavanagh added she would be happier if SCEE followed the US and Japan in reducing that £425 price point. “We’re absolutely of the view that Sony will succeed, without question,” she offered.
“It’s just a case of the timing. From our point of view, the acceleration of that installed base could be driven by further price cuts. The hardware is pretty expensive. As soon as we start to see cuts coming in, we’ll be more comfortable with the performance of PS3.
“The fact that the month after the US announced a price cut there was a doubling of hardware sales speaks volumes – and is incredibly encouraging. If we could have a similar price drop to the US, that would be a very positive first step.”