Sony Missing An Opportunity With No North America 12GB PS3
Yesterday, Sony announced a new lineup of “super slim” PlayStation 3 consoles. The CECH-4000 series consoles will be featuring a slimmer look than the current model available in the United States and Canada, feature a top loading Blu-ray drive, come in charcoal black or classic white, and feature a 250GB or 500GB hard drive. In Europe, they’ll be receiving a different SKU that contains 12GB of internal memory instead of the hard drive (an option that can be purchased separately at a later time will be available), however, this model will not be available in North America, and Sony could be missing out on a great opportunity because of it.
With console sales slumping in 2012, Sony could seize the moment with this holiday season by introducing a lighter weight, and more economical, current-gen console to those who find the $249-$299 price range to still be too steep to get in the game. Furthermore, with the impending launch of the Wii U, the maker of the PlayStation 3 could take the opportunity to offer their wares for less than the new Nintendo console, and ride the upcoming surge of console sales that the next-gen system is likely to generate by offering a system with a much larger library of games, Blu-ray functionality, and a whole suite of applications to make the PS3 Super Slim attractive to parents looking for a home entertainment solution as well as a gaming system for their younglings.
With the current pricing of the new SKUs starting at $269.99 and $299.99 for the 250GB and 500GB models respectively, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to put a 12GB SKU on the market for $149-$199, and sell the hard drive kits for an extra $100 or so (and still be cheaper than Microsoft’s hard drive option). This would open up the PlayStation 3 to the consumer market that’s been waiting for a current-gen console to hit the pricing “sweet spot”, while also solidifying the its position as a better value against the Wii U when the system launches at $299-$349 in November.
In any event, the newest iteration of the PS3 Slim is quite sharp-looking, although it really isn’t much smaller than the current slim line (the current slim measures at 11.42 x 2.56 x 11.42 in. while the new incoming version measures at 11.42 x 2.36 x 9.05 in.), and gamers who enjoy downloading tons of content but aren’t too hip to cracking open their PS3 to upgrade a hard drive will find the 500GB option quite enticing.
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