Because of the fears of potential harm to the physical and mental development of the young, sale and import of game consoles are banned in China since 2000. Microsoft, Nintendo and SONY made several attempts but failed to find a way to enter the Chinese mainland market officially. Now the three companies might see some daylight. Chinese authorities are now reviewing a decade-long ban on game consoles and considering the possibility of opening up the country’s video game hardware market. Rumors have circulated in the Chinese media that the communist government is changing attitude …
A source from the country’s Ministry of Culture, the authorities are reviewing the policy and have conducted some surveys and held discussions on the possibility of opening up the game console market. Gaming companies are now hoping to figure out the Chinese authorities’ intentions so they can quickly make a market decision. The decade-long ban prompted a game console black market in China. Xbox, PlayStation and Wii are all smuggled from Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong. Wholesale dealers illegally import the consoles and resell them in Chinese market. The sales reached a peak between 2006 and 2010, when Nintendo and Microsoft launched their motion sensing consoles, allowing the players to interact with and manipulate images on the screen via gesture recognition.
China could be about to open trade in games consoles, the approval is not official yet, but it is possible and likely. Chinese consumer might be able to form a gaming dynasty soon, and international game producers will be facing strict scrutiny. It will also be interesting to see how the three gaming companies grab their share in China’s massive video gaming market, as online PC gaming and the new rise of smartphone gaming have already become the mainstream. Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) has set up a branch in South China’s Guangdong province last year. The branch will conduct training and research and development work for Sony’s PlayStation business. Microsoft also introduced its Kinect to the Chinese mainland last year. However the device is not used for gaming but for medical treatment and education.
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