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December 4, 2006 - While the PlayStation 3 is now out in North America and Japan, most of the world is waiting until next March to get its hands on the most powerful/expensive console ever. By the time the PS3 launches in Australia, the Wii and Xbox 360 will have a four-month and 11-month head start, respectively. But Sony apparently isn't worried about the delay, confident that Blu-Ray will carry the system to victory in the next-generation console wars.

"The Wii-type functionality is more just a sub-element of what the PlayStation 3 offers," Nic Foster, general manager for Sony Australia & New Zealand, told the Sydney Morning Herald. "Wii is a core gaming device. It's a more fun, intuitive sort of product to pick up, where the PS3 is a broader entertainment solution; so you can have your fun, enjoyable gaming…but then you have a whole suite of other applications...such as Blu-ray media playback, the ability to access your music, access your photos and the interoperability with the PlayStation Portable.

"Gamers are extremely aware of what they're after and what they want. So gamers will already have a very good understanding of what PlayStation 3 offers versus what Wii offers and many of them will probably have both devices."

Sony Europe isn't losing any sleep over the wait for the PS3, either. Part of the reason for the delay, and for the small shipment numbers seen in the U.S. and Japan, is a difficulty in manufacturing the Blu-Ray laser diodes. But Paul Holman, vice-president of technology at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, says it would have been "messy" to offer a Blu-Ray player later as an accessory, as Microsoft has done with its HD-DVD player for the 360.

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