Positive Reviews For Sony’s Entry into Virtual Reality
Sony Corp (ADR) (NYSE:SNE) has announced the release date of its widely anticipated head-mounted virtual reality hardware for the Sony “PlayStation 4” (PS4) system. The Sony “PlayStation VR” (PS VR) release date is scheduled for October 13, 2016 and represents Sony Corp’s entry into virtual reality.
The Sony PS VR was developed with the gamer in mind, and will come with 50 game titles when released. Promising to deliver a vivid gaming experience, titles included with the Sony PS VR headset will be an all-new Star Wars Battlefront, VR Worlds, Golem, and RIGS: Mechanized Combat League. (Source: “VR Games Come First,” PlayStation, last accessed August 15, 2016) The list of other titles is really impressive and should be big hit with gamers of all ages.
Sony PS VR reviews echo that sentiment. Scott Stein and Sean Hollister of C|net said that, from what they’ve seen so far, the Sony PS VR, “looks pretty good,” adding that the games run smoothly on the sharp, crisp display. Their Sony PS VR review also points out that the headset is more comfortable to wear than some of the, “scuba-goggle” designs of other manufacturers’ products. (Source: “PlayStation VR: $399, October 13, and it looks pretty good to us,” C|net, June 13, 2016) Other Sony PS VR reviews have been similarly positive. One called it the “Promised Land for virtual reality on consoles” (Source: “Hands on: PlayStation VR review,” TechRadar, August 9, 2016) and another, “the people’s champion of VR headsets.”(Source: Sony PlayStation VR hands-on review, Stuff, March 25, 2016)
Sony PS VR Price Is Right for the Mass Market
This praise comes as the Sony PS VR price makes it one of the most affordable systems available to consumers, coming in at $399.00 in the United States. Other systems from Sony Corp’s competitors can run up to several hundred dollars more in price. And while the Sony PS VR price seems low, bear in mind that the system does not include motion-tracking controllers or a camera, which are needed to play most games. Therefore, Sony has offered a “Launch Bundle” that includes both items and runs $499.00, which still makes the complete system less expensive than other offerings.
Just in Time for Christmas
The Sony PS VR release date of October 13 represents great timing for Sony Corp, as it puts the system into stores just as they begin to stock for the holiday shopping season. And because the Sony PS VR system was designed to be family-friendly, it should be a big seller for Christmas. It’s a lot more accessible than some of the other more expensive systems out there, which can have applications that go well beyond playing games. And because Sony Corp set out to make this a gaming product, it should have wider appeal than some of the other systems on the market, which boast both consumer and commercial applications.
Could This Be a Game Changer For Sony Stock?
Only time will tell what kind of impact sales of the Sony PS VR system will have on SNE stock, but we think the effect will be positive. Sony has an installed consumer base of more than 40 million PlayStations in homes worldwide. (Source: C|net, op cit.) If just half of those customers add the Sony PS VR headset to their systems, sales would be just shy of $1.0 billion. The attraction of such a robust virtual reality game system should drive new incremental sales, which could very easily have a game changing positive effect on Sony stock.