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Rumor: PS3 Price Drop Imminent, Blu-ray-Free PS3 in the Works


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286w ago - A Wall Street analyst reports that a price reduction for the PlayStation 3 will happen "in the next couple days."

Mike Hickey with investment-banking firm Janco Partners told investors on Wednesday that he expects Sony will drop the price of the console to respond to sluggish hardware sales. To quote:

"Recent channel checks indicate increased speculation for a PS3 price cut announcement from Sony in the next couple of days," Hickey wrote.

Currently the PS3 is the most expensive of the three "next-gen" consoles on the market. The Playstation 3 with an 80 GB hard drive runs $399, while the 160 GB model is priced at $499. By comparison, the most expensive Xbox 360, which includes a 120 GB hard drive, retails at $399 and the economically priced Wii, when it can be found on shelves, sells for $249.

While many Playstation fans argue that the PS3 more than makes up the price difference with its Blu-ray drive, with the economy as it is, consumers are looking harder than ever at the PS3's spendy price tag.

In fact, Hickey believes the PS3's price would have to drop by at least $100 to make a big difference in Sony's sales numbers.

"We think the company needs to reduce the current price by USD 100 to effectively restart unit velocity at retail. We believe the market is expecting a PS3 price cut in April or by June at the latest."

Hickey also adds that he's heard murmurs of a Blu-ray-free PS3 in the works. Without the Blu-ray hardware, the console's production cost would shrink enough to rationalize a substantial price drop.

I have my doubts about this rumor. It makes no sense that Sony would remove the Blu-ray from consoles when, in many ways, Blu-ray was the Playstation 3's raison d'etre. From the day the Playstation 3 was introduced, Sony all but said it was selling the PS3 below cost in order to win the "format war" over HD-DVD. Abandoning that niche would be admitting that Blu-ray hasn't delivered as hoped.

And it's just not in Sony's corporate culture to ever admit such a defeat.

But I wonder: Given that we're three years into the new console cycle, hasn't anyone who's considering buying any gaming console already purchased one? And if not, would a $100 difference now make you get off the fence and buy a PS3?

Or are we all too worried about losing our jobs and paying our mortgages to consider such a creature comfort?



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GZA1984's Avatar
#11 - GZA1984 - 286w ago
OK, let's say Sony will release a PS3 without a blu-ray player and let's say you want to play Metal Gear Solid 4, or Killzone 2, or Uncharted. Those customers will be dissapointed, since they won't be able to play them, unless Sony puts it's whole already existing game database online, which I give a 99% chance that they won't do that (high server costs and not user friendly at alll!). Besides that players with a decent or slow internet subscription will need to have their PS3 online for like 2 days (MGS4 = ~50 GB). and then there's still the problem about disc space. Not only will you download an image file which will be 40-50 GB, but you'll also need to install it afterwards. This means you need like 100 GB for a game just like MGS4.

So to make this work well on the market, Sony will need to strip the current PS3, but then they need to increase the internal hard drive's space by....alot!

Now ask yourself, what is cheaper? A blu-ray diode or a hard disc with at least 100 GB (and that's for one game like MGS4)
So in the end in either way The PS3 won't get cheaper at all, but only more expensive!

This rumor is bogus!

B4rtj4h's Avatar
#10 - B4rtj4h - 286w ago
Its possible!

1. Sony wants a Download and play environment (look at the PSstore games)
2. They can use Hibryde discs! They can be played in a regular DVD player!

(link for discs: [Register or Login to view links] )

GZA1984's Avatar
#9 - GZA1984 - 286w ago
1. Blu-ray is doing quite well
2. ALL PS3 games are blu-ray discs
3. The PS3 is also sold because of it's blu-ray player capabilities.
4. The production costs of the PS3 might even go up, if they decide to choose a normal DVD-player now. Besides that you won't be able to play the games that are already out (on blu-ray discs)

therefore It's impossible to have a blu-ray free PS3 in the works. The one that came up with the rumor doesn't know what he's talking about or has a very low IQ. It doesn't make any sense to get rid of it.

hacked2123's Avatar
#8 - hacked2123 - 286w ago
Yep the analyst is indeed retarded to believe they would remove the component that allows something like DVD's to be played back. Removing the blue laser diode wouldn't save more than $15 bucks either.

Ideally, Sony, to cut cost would remove the power supply from within the unit to the outside, and centering the BD-ROM and converting it to the laptop sized BD-ROM. By doing these to moves, the shape of the console would change, the weight of the system would change. The curve on top of the system (that reads PLAYSTATION 3) would then have to run horizontally instead of vertically, cutting the size of the system down approx. 33%. System weight loss 8-10%, overall system weight loss 2%. This would aide in system repairs and heat dissipation as well (having the power supply external would cut internal heat, and be one less thing to ship in the event of repair.)

That's just my thoughts...but what do I know about technology and the PS3...

PS3 News's Avatar
#7 - PS3 News - 286w ago
Frankly I'm surprised that this "article" was even written, much less posted! It makes absolutely NO SENSE to me: both the "ARTICLE", AND the concept of a Blu-rayLESS PS3!
Indeed, Analyst Mike Hickey seems to be taking quite a beating for it on other sites as well.

Personally, I can see the move towards digital distribution and DLC over disc-based games, but that still doesn't account for those already on Blu-ray format.

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