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Chris Deering speaks

For the first time in over a year! Well, to the press anyway...

Chris Deering, one of the Sony computing sector's three presidents, has given an interview to Computer & Videogames journalist Patrick Garratt after a break of some 18 months since his last interview with the specialist press. During the exchange, Deering tackles topics including the £199 price point, the ups and downs of PS2 development, market share, the competition and the effect of the September 11th attacks on SCE's business. It's an interesting interview - Deering seems to ramble a bit at times, but we figure the transcription is a bit lacking. Whoever did it managed to cut and paste the entire thing twice, so that the interview actually terminates after four and a half pages, but goes on for nine… One of the points that Deering can hardly avoid ramming home is that Microsoft and Nintendo are too late to the game, particularly in Europe. "Do you think you've won in Europe; you've won this generation of hardware? Do you think you'll be the number one seller?" Garratt asks at one point. "I think so." Deering responds categorically. A far cry from the answer Xbox supremo, Sandy Duncan, who seemed to think Microsoft should be the market leader in Xboxes at X01. Still, if you will fly all your friends in the press to France and douse them in alcohol, they will pressure you into saying silly things. It's worth noting that Deering feels Sony have won, but he's not about to take it for granted. It's also interesting to see just how much respect the man has for Sega's Dreamcast. "What Dreamcast did was 'low-tech and connect'. I highly respect what they were able to do." Of course, the fact that Sega are now one of Sony's biggest development partners has nothing to do with that. We're sure that he was playing a slightly different tune 12 months ago… At that point, everyone (including Sega) was starting to realise that someone had made a dreadful error, and this vision of a broadband userbase was still several years off. Although Deering wasn't questioned about frivolities like the PS2 Linux Kit, he did promise that the broadband / network adapter, modem and hard disk drive are just around the corner. Of course, as we revealed last week, a number of devices are on the market already that will work fine with the PS2's networked software, e.g. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3. These do not require the hard disk drive to be installed alongside, but Deering enthused that it was playing an important part in the Telewest trials, and that it should be available at "pretty much the same time as the network adapter for those people that have access to pipes that can make use of it." Hrm. The hard disk drive will not encourage sloppy coding though, although it doesn't sound like that would matter in any case. In answer to another of Garratt's queries Deering admitted that according to internal program analysers, even games like GT3 were only using about 25% of the console's overall capacity. We fancy it's a bit more complicated than he's implying, mind.

Source - C&VG

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