updated 07:31 pm EDT, Sun May 25, 2014
Partnership will see console manufactured in free trade zone, companies formed
Following the lift of the ban on foreign console sales in China in January, Sony has confirmed that the Playstation 4 will be coming to the country. A deal with Shanghai-based Oriental Pearl Culture Department (OPCD) has been announced that will see manufacture of the console in the country, inside of Shanghai's free trade zone.
Two companies will come from the deal, with one set to oversee the sales and manufacture of hardware, while another will manage services and distribution, licensing, research and development and sales of software according to Engadget. Of the two new companies, Sony China will hold 70 percent ownership of Sony Computer Entertainment (Shanghai) and 49 percent of Shanghai Oriental Pearl Sony Computer Entertainment Culture development.
In the statement, it was said that the partnerships would "introduce quality, healthy games that are suitable to China's national conditions and the preferences of domestic players, as according to the relevant government policies." The statement is a euphemism that means China will continue to censor foreign games brought into the country. It is possible the regionless Playstation 4 could see hardware restrictions placed on it to keep imported games from being played.
A date has not been set when the console will begin sales, but if the competitive market of the United States is any indication it will be a race between Sony and Microsoft to get there first. Microsoft's partner, China's BestTV, is also owned by the same parent company as OPCD, Shanghai Media Group.