Hirai clarifies PS3 specs further

But what's the deal with wi-fi?

Following confusion over the technical specifications of the two versions of the PS3 Sony plans to launch, SCEA president Kaz Hirai has confirmed that the 20GB model will not feature HDMI output or data card inputs.

In an interview with CNN Money, Hirai said: "We felt that if you want to save something on your Memory Stick, most people have those readers on their PC, which is easily adaptable to the PlayStation 3 with a USB cord."

"The only difference is HDMI - and at this point, I don't think many people's TV's have that. The ultimate result, to my eyes anyway, is there's not a discernable difference between what you get between HDMI and other forms of high definition."

There is still some confusion over whether the 20GB PS3 will feature wi-fi functionality - according to a spec sheet issued by Sony, it will only be incorporated into the 60GB model. Neither Hirai's comments nor those made earlier by Sony Worldwide Studios president Phil Harrison have cleared up the issue.

Hirai went on to defend the price point for the PS3, which will retail for $499 / 499 for the 20GB version and $599 / 599 for the 60GB model. He dismissed suggestions that the price is too high, stating: "I think when you look at what we put into the box - Cell, Blu-Ray, backwards compatibility, the ability to go online - I think it's a very compelling package for consumers. The totality of what we bring to the table makes it a good value for consumers."

"What we're presenting to consumers is future-proofed. It's not going to fall by the wayside," he added.

Hirai went on to say that he is confident Sony will meet its targets of shipping four million PS3s around the globe by the end of the year, with a further two million to follow by April.

"We have the advantage of manufacturing our own chips. Most of the PlayStation 3's core components are manufactured in-house. The decision to give the go order comes when we're getting good yields."

"Obviously, the sooner the better, but we're not at the mercy of someone else."

Microsoft's Peter Moore isn't so sure Sony can meet its manufacturing targets, as he told us earlier - we'll be bringing you the full interview later today.

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