Cheaper, cooler running consoles on the way!
We already know that IBM has 45nm Cell CPUs in the works and we had hoped to see it make its way into the PS3 by now. While that hasn’t happened, we at least have some more information about when it might, thanks to SCEE president David Rees in an interview with the Guardian.
Speaking about the need for Sony to reduce the cost of its console, Rees suggested that one such way would be would be “replacing the current 65 nanometre Cell chip with a 45 nanometre one probably in (the) middle of (the) year.” Obviously Rees’ words can’t be interpreted as definitive confirmation of Sony’s plans as a whole, but there’s been enough rumour around in the past months to assuage my doubts at least.
Hopefully not only would such a move mean not only lower manufacturing costs for Sony, and thus improved profits, but also cheaper consoles too. As many Sony execs have admitted, the high entry price, relative to its rivals, of the PS3 is definitely prohibiting many would-be buyers.
Doubtless speculation will run rife about a possible ‘slimline’ PS3 as a result of the smaller chips and lower thermal constraints. I doubt such a SKU will be released any time soon, though. And frankly I’d rather Sony invested the money is getting a LittleBigPlanet sequel out ASAP!