Kaz Hirai: putting Blu-ray on PS3 'was right thing to do'

PS3 without Blu-ray? Not very likely
PS3 without Blu-ray? Not very likely

Another E3 went by this year and yet another chance for Sony to drop the price of the PlayStation 3 wasn't taken.

One of the biggest reasons behind this is that the company uses Blu-ray for both its gaming and movie capabilities – technology that in the grand scheme of things is still generally expensive to make.

When PlayStation boss Kaz Hirai was asked in an interview with the Guardian recently if he regretted including a Blu-ray drive on the PS3 was a bad idea, he was quick to defend his decision: "Purely from a gaming standpoint there was no other choice for us," he noted.

"Last year's Metal Gear Solid 4 was pushing 50GB as it was, if it was on DVD it would have been a 6-disc set.

"The packaging and cost would have been prohibitive and it would have been hugely inconvenient to consumers."

Format war winners

When asked if there was ever a though of taking the Blu-ray out of the machine, Hirai replied: "Conceptually it may make sense to remove the Blu-Ray drive but in reality it doesn't make sense.

"Also we never want to be in the position where countries without super fast broadband connections are locked out of the PlayStation business because the PS3 has gone download only."

He also reveals that having Blu-ray in the PS3 aided in Sony winning the format war. "The PS3 installed base certainly went a long way to making the movie studios side with Blu-ray rather then HD-DVD or supporting both," said Hirai.

"Ultimately it ended up being the right thing for the entirety of the industry as consumers don't need to hedge their bets. We had a lot to do with making Blu-ray the de-facto standard."

Via the Guardian and Kotaku

Marc Chacksfield

Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, Shortlist.com at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.