It looks like Blu-ray titles could implement the Image Constraint Token (ICT) after all. Designed to downgrade the picture quality of Blu-ray discs when viewed via component outputs, ICT was looking in danger of being made unusable following Sony’s decision to restrict HD connectivity on the low-end PS3 to component only.
But with an announcement that the company will, after all, include HDMI on the cheaper PS3, come fears that Hollywood’s plan to ruthlessly restrict viewing options for high-def is back as a viable copyright option.
Talking at the Tokyo Game Show, Sony Computer Entertainment President Ken Kutaragi confirmed that Sony has rethought its decision to use component only, and will fit all units with HDMI v1.3.
Sony says that “demand for enjoying full HD quality image and realistic digital sound through HDMI has grown tremendously. Given the sharp increase in availability of flat displays supporting HDMI in the market, SCEI has decided to equip HDMI as standard on all PS3 systems.”
Clearly wary of consumer resistance to the initial price points quoted for the console, Sony has also slashed the price of the entry-level Japanese model by 20 percent
The new basic PlayStation 3 will now sell for 47,600 yen, down from 59,800 yen. Strategically, that puts the unit at the same price point as an Xbox 360 with bundled HD DVD drive.