Friday, October 10, 2014

Following Xbox, PlayStation Gets One Step Closer to Launching In China

Following Sony's initial announcement back in May that it planned to launch PlayStation systems in China, the electronics giant is now one step closer to making that a reality.
According to a government filing this week (via The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg), a Sony-affiliated factory in Shanghai's new free-trade zone plans to start packaging PlayStation consoles starting in December. The facility is reportedly capable of handling 200,000 units per year.
A spokesperson for Sony confirmed that the 200,000 figure "doesn't represent an actual business plan." The representative added that this figure could sway in response to other factors such as the number of games Sony can sell in China.
Unfortunately, the filing that was made public this week did not specify which PlayStation console would be shipped in China. Late last month, Microsoft launched the Xbox One in China, with first-week sales coming in at 100,000 units. Nintendo has not yet announced plans to bring its gaming devices to China.
Consoles were banned in China in 2000, with government officials citing the detrimental effect they could have on the physical and psychological development of children. This ban was lifted in September 2013, and the Xbox One was the first console to launch in the market following the news.
Though China is a potentially lucrative market for gaming, it remains to be seen how successful consoles like the Xbox One or PlayStation 4 will be in the country. One major potential stumbling block is China's censorship rules for games, which could be why titles like Call of Duty: Ghosts and Titanfall are not available for sale in China.