The PS3 CPU Cost Sony $1.7 Billion To Develop

Expert Verified By

Cell Processor Led To $600 PS3 Launch Price!

Story Highlights
  • Sony reportedly spent about $1.7 billion on the PS3 processor.
  • The company is estimated to have lost $300 on every console sold initially.
  • The revenue was mainly generated from software sales.

Sony’s PS3 was released 17 years ago. Although it couldn’t hit massive sales figures like its predecessor, the hardware was groundbreaking in more than a few ways.

It was the first console to offer Blu-ray support, came with extensive online functionality, and boosted the Cell Broadband Engine. According to a report, this CPU cost Sony $1.7 billion to develop, making the initial years of the console difficult for the company.

Why it matters: This processor is the main reason behind Sony’s decision to skip backward compatibility for the PS3 library. Therefore, despite its upsides, the Cell Broadband Engine was far from a blessing for Sony.

This is a massive investment considering the PS3 was far from Sony’s best-selling console, and the Cell architecture did not thrive much either. The processor was developed by Sony, IBM, and Toshiba.

This collaboration was certainly ambitious, with the companies hoping to use the Cell to power various pieces of hardware, including TVs, cameras, and more. Despite the massive investment, the Cell Broadband Engine failed to achieve this goal.

It also became the main reason for the $600 launch price of the PS3. As for why the CPU didn’t work out, it was simply too hard to use at the time, making the Xbox 360 preferable for third-party teams.

Sony later shifted to a more ideal x86 architecture processor made by AMD for the PS4.

PlayStation 3 PS3
The Original PS3 Was Sony’s Most Expensive Console

If we compare this investment to the typical AMD-based APU used in today’s consoles, Sony’s $1.7 billion investment would likely be several times higher.

The current APUs used in the PS5 belong to the Ryzen family of processors, showing many similarities to their PC counterparts. This eliminates R&D costs involved in the creation of a completely new technology such as the Cell Broadband Engine.

Sony lost about $300 on every console it sold initially, hoping to make it up through software sales.

These losses were eventually reduced as the PS3 became cheaper to manufacture, and features like PS2 backward compatibility were cut from future models. Many believe the PS3 made a massive comeback toward the end of the generation, but it is still PlayStation’s weakest console so far.

Was our article helpful? 👨‍💻

Thank you! Please share your positive feedback. 🔋

How could we improve this post? Please Help us. 😔

Latest News

Join Our Community



MGS 3 Remake Still Has No Release Date But New Footage Looks Excellent

The Xbox Games Showcase has brought an outstanding first look at the much anticipated Metal Gear Solid 3 Remake gameplay trailer.

Perfect Dark Shatters Expectations With Incredible Gameplay First Look

Xbox has just revealed the gameplay trailer for Perfect Dark, and it seems Crystal Dynamics has something special on its hands.

Resident Evil 9 Expected To Mark Leon Kennedy and Jill Valentine’s Return

A reliable leaker has once again indicated that Leon will return for Resident Evil 9. It seems he will be accompanied by Jill Valentine.

Elden Ring Shadow of The Erdtree Is Here And 62% Players Can’t Play It 

The majority of the Elden Ring players haven't beaten Mohg Lord of Blood, which would stop them from playing Shadow of the Erdtree.

Assassin’s Creed Shadows Exceeds Expectations In Gameplay Reveal

The new Assassin's Creed Shadows gameplay trailer has been dropped during the Xbox Games Showcase, and it looks stunning.