After having launched its own branded Google TV set top box, it looks like Japanese electronics maker Sony may be bringing the Google television streaming service to its Playstation gaming console. Though these rumors come from “unverified sources,” I think that such a move makes sense for several reasons. First, Playstation already offers streaming service via Netflix, and second, Sony already has a box in your living room–providing Google TV would be a value-added benefit to Playstation owners who already have a plethora of living room boxes. And third, rival Microsoft has already announced U-Verse streaming for its Xbox gaming platform. The move would also make the Playstation a more “complete” box, by bringing the possibility of apps, social networking integration, and the Web to gamers.
Again, at this time, as excited as we are to be hopeful that such an integration happens, neither Sony nor Google have confirmed whether this will happen. The tie-ins are obvious, and the benefits to Sony and to consumers of the Playstation would be great–Sony could capture eyeballs on the TV longer as gamers could have the benefit of using the Web and other services in down time or in between game play. As Sony is increasing its relationship with Google, especially in light of the rumored Playstation Phone, a lot can happen in the future.
A potential move would be to reserve high-end games in the Playstation ecosystem on discs, as they are now, and to use Google TV and the potential apps that the Google ecosystem provides for budget or low-cost games. This way, we may see game play extended between the TV and the phone–a feature that Microsoft has already been boasting with its Windows Phone 7 and Xbox integration–on the Playstation, PSP, and Playstation Phone. We won’t know how this all plays out until Sony really clarifies and understands what its mobile strategy is moving forward–and also how it could leverage the synergies between different Sony divisions.
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