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PlayStation head Harrison to step down

Phil Harrison follows PlayStation "father" Ken Kutaragi in leaving the executive ranks of Sony's video game console operations, perhaps because of PS3's poor performance.

Phil Harrison, head of Sony Computer Entertainment International worldwide studios, plans to leave his post February 29. James Martin/CNET

It appears that the poor performance of the PlayStation 3 may have claimed another victim among Sony's top brass.

Sony announced early Monday that Phil Harrison, president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios--and therefore the head of the PlayStation group--would be stepping down February 29.

No specific reason was given for Harrison's departure. Kazuo Hirai, president and group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment International, plans to assume Harrison's position.

One can assume that Harrison may well be the latest head to roll in the wake of the poor performance of the PlayStation 3--the next-generation video game console that launched with gigantic expectations but has wallowed in third place, trailing Nintendo's Wii and Microsoft's Xbox 360.

The April departure of Ken Kutaragi, the so-called "father" of the PlayStation, was widely assumed to be a result of the PS3's poor sales.