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Sony Prepares to Battle Nintendo

Boot Camp feature for Friday, January 14, 2005

Sony prepares to battle Nintendo. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. With it's Game Boy devices…including the latest with dual screens…the DS…Nintendo has owned the handheld game business for years…controlling about 95 percent of the market worth about four billion dollars a year. Now…Nintendo is being challenged by Sony…which will begin selling the Playstation Portable…or PSP…in the United States in March. In an interview at the Consumer Electronics Show, Sony Corporation of America CEO Howard Stringer told me…

"It's WiFi connected, so it's a network device, it's a true convergence device, so it's an all purpose, versatile piece of equipment with first and foremost, a 16 by 9 screen that is better than any image on the market." You sold more than half a million units in Japan in the first month. You're going to be introducing it in the March time frame here in the U.S.? "Sometime towards the end of March, yes." What's the target price, a ballpark figure? "It's somewhat under two hundred dollars. Which is maybe the biggest electronic bargain in the history of anything." What are your expectations for sales? "I have no difficulty believing it will do the same level of enthusiasm in this country. I think showing movies on it…I think it will become a portable movie player before you can say PSP."

Sony's Howard Stringer. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.