Seven million in seven months. Seven looks to be a lucky number for Sony as it presents the data for the PlayStation Home users in its young existence. Peter Edward, director of the PlayStation Home platform group, took to the Develop Conference stage in Brighton to spell out the numbers for their online gaming service.
Out of the seven million users, three million of these are from Europe, he said. Meanwhile, 80 of the total number of users are aged 18-35, which indicates a broadening user base of the PS3.
The fact that European users also spend an average of 56 minutes online in Home for every session is getting the media agencies "very excited." Characterized Edward, "Reaching this number of PS3 users via other media would be incredibly costly." Other Euro data reveals that they have in fact downloaded six million virtual items, whether paid for or free.
"This is a commercial business, it's up and running and it's making money," further said Edward in his first term report for Home. The US 1 million profit generated by the service from micro-transactions on its first month alone corroborates that statement.
It becomes rather curious, therefore, to see that the European Home version is lagging behind in terms of content as compared to other regions when it turns out that they comprise a huge chunk of the user base.
In an attempt to explain, Edward zooms in on the problem of localization:
I think localization is a big part of that. The expectation that spaces will be localized into at least the EFIGS (English, French, Italian, German and Spanish) languages leads to delays. There are other issues that you're no doubt aware of if you've read the post, [ones] more specifically related to the European business itself which I can't really comment on, but I think technically the big issue's localization, and I think that's something that's always been an issue with the European market.
Since year dot there's always been the issue of Europe getting things later than everybody else, and normally speaking that comes down to localization. Home is no different in that respect which is why it's so important to get that stuff incorporated from the very beginning.
The post he was referring to would be EU Home Community Manager TedTheDog's post acknowledging the lack of content in their Space, but promising "better months ahead".
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