Sony announces 40GB PS3 for North America, drops price on 80GB model.

Not two days after I purchase my shiny new 60GB PS3 and Sony drops the price on the 80GB model down to what I just paid as well as announcing the pending arrival of the 40GB model in North America:

With all the speculation and buzz out there regarding the 40GB PS3 announcements in Japan and Europe, I am very excited to confirm that the new $399 PS3 model will be coming to North America on November 2nd, making that particular configuration available worldwide. In North America, the 40GB PS3 comes bundled with the block-buster movie Spider-Man 3 on Blu-ray. Also, effective today, we’ve lowered the purchase price of our 80GB model by $100 to $499.

This move has been part of our longer term business strategy for PS3 since early on and we believe this lower priced model, combined with our broad line-up of content will appeal to a great many of you who want a lower entry price without sacrificing any of the core components of PS3. With today’s news, we’re strengthening our position approaching this holiday season and beyond with the intent to provide you with a choice and an excellent entry point into HD games and movies.

Adding to the appeal of the new retail pricing is the great PS3 lineup that will help further drive our momentum this holiday, including Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction, THE EYE OF JUDGMENT, Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, Heavenly Sword, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Assassin’s Creed, Haze and Rock Band. And that’s just the beginning: This holiday lineup will be followed in 2008 by highly-anticipated Gran Turismo 5 Prologue, Grand Theft Auto IV, Killzone 2, LittleBigPlanet and, of course, PlayStation Home.

Our goal this holiday season is to make PS3 even more affordable and to offer you greater choice to suit your gaming and entertainment needs. Again, I want to thank all of you for your continued support throughout this past year and I look forward to the months and years ahead.

Truth is, I’m not at all upset about this because I wanted the better backwards compatibility the 60GB model has over the 80GB model (and the non-existent compatibility in the 40GB model). I’d probably be upset if a price drop was announced for the remaining 60GB models, but so far that doesn’t appear to have happened. It would have been nice to get a packed in movie or a game, but I do have two coupons good for 5 Blu Ray movies (each) for free so I can’t complain. It looks like Best Buy has already updated their site as the 80GB is listed at the same price as the 60GB model now, but I’ll be keeping watch to see if the price on the 60GB drops anytime soon to see if perhaps I might get a couple of bucks back.

Anyway, if you’ve been waiting for the cheaper non-backwards compatible version then your ship is about to come in.

6 thoughts on “Sony announces 40GB PS3 for North America, drops price on 80GB model.

  1. I don’t doubt that for a moment and, honestly, I can’t blame them. In an interview on Newsweek’s Level Up blog SCEA North America CEO Jack Tretton tried to explain Sony’s reasoning on dropping the backwards compatibility this way:

    [Playstation CEO] Kaz Hirai said in 2006, “I think that when we ask the consumers, or the gamers to make an investment in software, that it’s our responsibility to make sure that the future consoles that we bring to market, including a Playstation 3, is able to actually play all these titles that the consumers have really spent a lot of money in, and invested a lot of money into really a master library.” Doesn’t the removal of backwards compatibility for PS2 games from the PS3 represent a betrayal of what the Playstation brand stands for?

    I guess the way I tend to look at it, N’Gai, is if I’m a consumer, and I paid $599 for the Playstation 3 when it launched, I got backwards compatibility and I got Playstation 3 technology. Today, for $399, I’m able to get all the same technology in the Playstation 3, and for $129, if I don’t own a PlayStation 2, I can buy that as well at any retailer in North America. So for a total investment of $529, I’ve got two machines that do everything the same machine did a year ago at $599. So it’s hard for me to see that as a negative for the consumer.

    He has a valid, if somewhat weak, point there. As I said before the majority of people who are concerned about backwards compatibility already own a PS2 anyway and if they’re that worried about it then the 80GB model is still available which does have that feature.

    But of course they’re going to want to push PS3 games. They did the same when they released the PS2.

  2. So for a total investment of $529, I’ve got two machines that do everything the same machine did a year ago at $599.

    It would be even better for the consumer to split the difference and flog off the old PS2.

    I’m in a quandary. I’d like to play more games, but the current DRM shit has removed the PC from my list of platforms. The few games I’d like to play aren’t available on consoles or if they are, no single console will run them all. I guess I’m not playing new games anytime soon.

  3. Personally if I bought it I don’t have an ethical problem with going to the trouble of making it work by whatever means necessary. Bon Voyage wouldn’t play on my computer without the dedicated folks in the underground scene cracking the hell out of it, and that’s fine with me.

  4. So far my plans have been to get a friend with X system and rent the game I desire for a weekend marathon.

    One day, maybe. Not right away for me.

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