PS3 is 'out of the woods' says Sony

The PS3 is arguably the most powerful games console available

The PlayStation 3 console is going through a transition period. After high prices, a lack of games and technical dissatisfaction among gamers led to poor sales initially, things look to be turning around.

Sony CEO, Howard Stringer and SCEE president, David Reeves, have both been mouthing off recently about a change in the PS3's fortunes.

PS3 ready to kick some ass?

"PS3 has now gone past Xbox on the Christmas market. It's moving into its own as it gets into higher bandwidth ... PS3 is out of the woods and beginning to hold its own," Stringer said at the end of last week.

Reeves, on the other hand, has been talking to industry mag MCV about the success of the PlayStation Network (PSN), which serves up digital downloads PS3 and PSP gamers.

"One thing that has surprised us is in the Network purchases and the general level of interest that has been shown around the Network business.

"We've gone from zero to almost double-digit millions in terms of what people have purchased in euros. We've now got about two million PSN registrations. That's about 40 per cent of users. We've also had around 33 million downloads, which is a huge number. And we've got 25 stores up and running across the PAL territories," he said.

PS3: difficult to code for?

The launch of the cheaper 40GB PS3 model has certainly boosted sales. And regular firmware updates have turned the PS3 into a sparkling media hub. The recent shift in the HD war to Blu-ray is also a big boost for Sony's pricey games machine. But has the PS3 really emerged from under its dark cloud?

Coding for the PS3 is believed to be the chief reason why highly anticipated games such as Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto 4 have been severely delayed.

Rockstar's Jeronimo Barrera told MCV: "It's really no surprise to anybody that the PS3 was definitely a contributing factor to [the delays]. Now though, we're neck and neck.

"Back then that was something we were taking into account. That's not to say there's anything wrong with the PS3 version. It's awesome. They're both identical."

While increased sales and an improved reputation have gone some way to pulling the PS3 back on track, there's a lot of work still to be done. That being said, 2008 could still be the year that the PS3 finally makes a name for itself in the games industry.

James Rivington

James was part of the TechRadar editorial team for eight years up until 2015 and now works in a senior position for TR's parent company Future. An experienced Content Director with a demonstrated history of working in the media production industry. Skilled in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), E-commerce Optimization, Journalism, Digital Marketing, and Social Media. James can do it all.