Sony’s Hirai Says PlayStation 3 Is Only Halfway Through 10-Year Life Cycle

Sony Corp. (SNE)’s Kazuo Hirai said the PlayStation 3 console will have a 10-year lifespan, suggesting the 5-year-old video-game player won’t be replaced soon.

Networks can’t deliver the full amount of data contained on game disks, Hirai, Sony’s executive deputy president, said at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

“It’s very important that we continue to have a dedicated home-based console,” Hirai said. “Relying solely on networks to deliver content is unfortunately just not possible. It’s still very difficult to have consumers download 50 gigabytes of data or more.”

The PlayStation 3 was introduced in November 2006. Some press reports suggested a new version would be unveiled at this year’s E3 video-game conference.

Hirai also told CNBC that turning around Sony’s money- losing TV manufacturing operation is crucial to company profitability. In December, Tokyo-based Sony sold its stake in a liquid-crystal-display venture with Samsung Electronics Co.

Sony is considering developing exclusive shows for its devices, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Howard Stringer said today in a separate interview.

“It’s coming,” Stringer said. “It’s natural.”

U.S. traded Sony shares gained 1.3 percent to $17.70 at the close. The stock fell 49 percent last year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Cliff Edwards in San Francisco at cedwards28@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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