Interview: The Father of PlayStation

On the eve of the Play-Station 3 launch, Ken Kutaragi, the head of Sony Computer Entertainment and the creator of all three generations of the hit game console, took time off to give a rare interview to NEWSWEEK's Steven Levy, via phone from Tokyo.

KUTARAGI : Maybe within a year. Many of the launch titles already have some of the graphics and the power there. But [titles like] MotorStorm and Ridge Racer and Gran Turismo are going to be released within a year, and that quality is exciting.

Everyone will soon have elegant flat displays for HD content--PS3 and the high-definition movie media. The Blu-ray has 50-gigabyte capacity, and many studios and other DVD makers are now supporting Blu-ray format. Didn't adopting Blu-ray cause you delays?

Yes, that's right, because the PS3 contained the latest technology--Blu-ray, Cell, Sixaxis and many things. The Blu-ray had the manufacturing problem. As the father of the PlayStation, I have to apologize to all of the users and the readers who are waiting for PS3. But everything is fixed.

I don't think so, because the PS2 was originally $299 in the United States. But the hard-disk drive was another $200. So the total price was almost equal to PS3's initial pricing.

It will be significant not only for Sony, but for other [electronics] manufacturers who sell flat displays. And also content developers.

I still am an engineer and a designer, so being the creator is my happiness. I've dedicated 120 percent of my life and passion [to PlayStation], so it was very happy timing. And Howard Stringer leads the management team, and now they are taking care of day-to-day issues so we could concentrate on the PlayStation.

Yes. Maybe in the near future, either from Sony or maybe from third parties, we will release a network storage system that contains multi-terabyte capacity. So it could be the hub of the media center in the house.

The media tree. That was my dream, so the dream has come true. They sent out one of the PlayStation 3s to my home, so I happened to realize [my family members] are watching their photos and they are ripping music, and the experience is quite elegant, quite fast and comfortable. I have no idea how to use the current PC for that kind of application.

The best way is waiting, but maybe you have some lucky friend who can get the Play-Station 3. So please visit your friend's home to share and enjoy future entertainment.

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