Sony Computer Entertainment America Continues to Drive Category Growth With Introduction of PS One™

Newly-Designed PlayStation® Game Console Further Demonstrates Company's Commitment to Its Existing Business

PRNewswire
FOSTER CITY, Calif.
Sep 19, 2000

Demonstrating a strategic, multi-tiered approach to its consumer product portfolio, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. announced the release of its newly-designed, compact version of the popular PlayStation® game console, branded PS one™. With the widest distribution base of any platform ever available, PS one will be available at more than 20,000 stores on September 19, 2000 for a suggested retail price of $99.

  (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000919/
           http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000121/SONYPLAY/ )

Incorporating the same functionalities and technology of the original PlayStation game console, PS one is approximately one-third the size of the existing product, enabling consumers to comfortably carry the system. The introduction of this new model will replace the original PlayStation design and include a DUALSHOCK™ analog controller, AC adapter for portability and necessary connector cables. Rather than competing against the soon-to-be-released PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the market demand for PlayStation hardware and software is stronger than ever and the introduction of PS one allows for market expansion, thus allowing each product to co-exist in the marketplace.

Today found in one out of every four U.S. households, the PlayStation game console has already reshaped the concept of entertainment for many consumers. In just five years, PlayStation has dominated the marketplace with a North American installed base of more than 27 million consoles, and life-to-date software shipments exceeding 240 million units. According to the July 2000 TRSTS report from the NPD Group, a leading market research firm that tracks and reports on the gaming industry, PlayStation continues to maintain market dominance, holding a 54.1 percent share of the U.S. hardware market and a 64.3 percent share of the software market life-to-date.

"Historically, no videogame system has achieved in sales what Sony Computer Entertainment has accomplished with the PlayStation game console," said Edward Williams, industry analyst with Gerard Klauer Mattison & Co., Inc. "Robust PlayStation sales have continuously demonstrated the company's ability to drive consumer demand and grow the overall market for game consoles and computer entertainment."

Initial sales of the PS one in Japan support this trend. "On the heels of the PlayStation 2 launch in March, Sony Computer Entertainment has already confirmed shipments of more than a quarter million PS ones in Japan since its launch on July 7th, which is almost the same as the first month's shipment of PlayStation units when the game console originally launched five years ago," said Jack Tretton, senior vice president, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. "Additionally, PS one is the second best-selling system in Japan, just behind PlayStation 2, confirming that this new product continues to expand the PlayStation business overall by representing a new lifestyle choice for many new consumers.

"We expect this type of consumer enthusiasm to translate into robust sales in this territory," added Tretton. "Even though the demand for PlayStation has always exceeded supply in North America, we have continually outsold our competition in both the hardware and software categories. Our challenge has never been selling the console, but rather being able to supply the retail channel with enough product to satisfy market needs."

PS one supports the existing PlayStation software catalog of more than 800 titles currently on the market, and the more than 150 additional titles currently under development to be released by year-end. At the end of August, the company introduced six new titles to its "Greatest Hits" library. The "Greatest Hits" line-up is a series of the most popular PlayStation games, available for as low as $19.99. The new titles include Gran Turismo™ 2, Crash Team Racing™ (CTR), Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage!™, Disney's Tarzan™, Cool Boarders®4 and Twisted Metal®4.

Building on its previous success, the 2000 PlayStation marketing campaign furthers the company's successful efforts to penetrate the overall entertainment market, and PS one will garner additional consumer exposure and awareness through these efforts. The marketing program will continue to feature extended print advertising in new, non-traditional vehicles, strategic television ad buys with an expansive children's programming push through a $10 million dedicated spend, and increased consumer promotions and cross promotional opportunities for all PlayStation entertainment franchises. The campaign also features ongoing partnerships with the most recognized youth-, family- and children-oriented brands. In addition, Sony Computer Entertainment America will be working in conjunction with its retail partners to strengthen the in-store presence for its popular "Greatest Hits" products.

This summer, consumers enjoyed the PlayStation game console at a variety of special events, in total reaching a wide and diverse audience of both current and future PlayStation fans. A sample of these events included: the seven-week cross-country VANS Warped Tour 2000; the popular KROQ Weenie Roast in Anaheim, California; the annual Sears Taste of Chicago; the VANS Triple Crown Series, in partnership with VANS; Comic-Con International representing the largest gathering of comic book fans in the country; the 107.7 EndFest in Seattle with feature artist KORN; the Honda Gran Prix of Monterey; and at numerous retailers nationwide through the 40-foot PlayStation GameMobile. Additionally, at the NBC Toy Test at the Pacific Science Center in Seattle, consumers enjoyed a special treat with the first PS one product sampling.

"With its portability and affordable price, the PS one will satisfy the strong demand retailers continue to experience for the PlayStation business, without cannibalizing future purchasers of the PlayStation 2," noted Tretton. "With the introduction of PS one, we are confident that we will be the first and only company in the marketplace to maintain and manage two successful platforms."

The PlayStation format will continue to broaden consumers' gaming experiences with the spring 2001 introduction of a specially designed LCD monitor for PS one. The four-inch color TFT LCD will allow consumers to enjoy the world of PlayStation entertainment either in their digital living room environment or outside their home. Specifics on exact release date and pricing are not available at this point.

Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. continues to redefine the entertainment lifestyle with its PlayStation® game console and the upcoming PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system. The PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system is set to revolutionize the home entertainment market, offering the most compelling interactive content and the capability to be used as a network terminal in the coming broadband era.

Recognized as the undisputed industry leader, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. markets the PlayStation game console and develops, publishes, markets and distributes software for the PlayStation game console and the upcoming PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system for the North American market. Based in Foster City, Calif., Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. serves as headquarters for all North American operations and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.

               PS ONE™ BASIC FEATURES AND SPECIFICATIONS

   Main Product Features

   Product Name:                   PlayStation (PS one™)

   Logo Type:                      PS one™

   Available:                      September 19, 2000

   Suggested Retail Price (SRP):   $99

   Production Forecast:            8 million units worldwide for FY '01
                                   (PS one and PlayStation game console
                                   combined)

   Dimensions:                     193 mm (W) x 38 mm (H) x 144 mm (D)

   Weight:                         550 g

   Formats Supported:              PlayStation CD-ROM, Audio CD

   Interfaces:                     Controller port (2)
                                   Memory Card slot (2)
                                   AV Multi Cable output (1)

   Accessories Included:           DUALSHOCK™ analog controller (1)
                                   AV Multi Cable (1)
                                   AC Adapter (1)

  Basic Specifications (same as existing PlayStation game console)

   CPU:                            32-bit RISC (R3000 custom)

   Clock Speed:                    33.8688 MHz

   Main Memory:                    16Mbit

   Graphics:                       PlayStation GPU

   Graphics Memory:                8Mbit

   Sound:                          SPU 24 channel

   Sound Memory:                   4Mbit

   Disc Drive:                     CD-ROM 2 times speed

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SOURCE: Sony Computer Entertainment America

Contact: Molly Smith, 650-655-6044, or molly_smith@playstation.sony.com,
or Stephanie Iwamasa, 650-655-6083, or stephanie_iwamasa@playstation.sony.com,
both of Sony Computer Entertainment America

Website: http://www.playstation.com/