In the Western world where access to entertainment media and technology is so freely available, we often poke fun at the idea that these things that we take for granted are not freely available to everyone. In America, whether or not video games are harmful to young minds is a topic of debate that comes up before the government every few years, usually after a mass tragedy. However, this has really only lead to a game rating system and nothing more intense than that. In other countries the fear of the harmful effects of gaming have caused much more extreme actions. China is one of these countries and as such has had a ban on consoles for the last 13 years.
Consoles were banned in China in the year 2000 when there was fear that young people would waste their lives in front of their games. Although there are stories of gamers spending days at their computers and PlayStations trying achieve specialized run through and unlock bonuses, these stories are rare and it is not even close to representing the average gamer. These tales are more like urban legends and internet sensations that fade away over time. The reality of the gamer is that for the most part, they are just like anyone else and able to uphold the same social and moral responsibilities as anyone.
China’s decision at the time was more of a moral panic button and now it has been lifted but there’s a tiny catch to it. Fans are able to purchase consoles but only those manufactured in the Shanghai Free-Trade Zone. The true motives of this move come out at this point, it was done not in an effort to free the gamers but in a move to help boost the economy. By producing the consoles it may be that China is looking to draw in more tech in order to increase foreign business and boost the economy by providing employment and revenue to its citizens. The exact motives are at this point unclear but this is still good news for fans of PlayStation 4 in the China as they will now be able to access the technology.
At the same time, Sony India is starting open up pre-orders for the PlayStation 4 in the region. There will be a delay in release for the console but the system will be available to fans for the pre-order. There is no official release date yet but it does say that it will be in 2013 so really, at the latest the console will be released for sale a month after it is release in other regions. Not such a bad wait.
China and India are two of the most populated countries in the world. India is a huge fan of technology and the lifting of the ban really presents a whole new market for Sony. Both of these countries provide huge possibilities in the way of sales.
Sony has always had a strong market and Asia but cornering these two countries could put them far ahead of their competition in terms of sales. Microsoft has always had a hard time catching on in the Asian markets and this could actually make the move harder for them to do so. Asian customers just do not seem as interested as a hole in the Microsoft product.
Which is great news for Sony as they can come in pick up the gamers that Microsoft is not able to capture. Of course Sony does well in its home country and Western countries as well but being able to push the product into these market territories will open the way for sales that they have not seen before.
China and India are to very large markets for technology. They both have their own unique advantages and needs when it comes to the gaming market. They have also both shown through digital computer based gaming that they are a market that loves to play. Being able to market and sale to these regions is a major step for Sony and will allow the company to gain an even larger foothold in the overall Asian market. How well the manufacturing of consoles goes for China has yet to be seen but at least allowing them to be sold at all is a step in the right direction for gaming fans.
With this being the first console many people in China have played since the original PlayStation, what do you think their experience is going to be like once they play the PlayStation 4?
Article by - Dusty W.
Insert Date: 10/11/2013