drops the price of the Playstation 2 console and other products.
Have you been in your local electronics retail store, lately? Did you have to do a
double take when you saw the price tag on the PS2? In case you havent noticed, as of
5/13/2002 Sony has dropped the price of its Playstation 2 console from $299 to $199.
The price reduction comes after much speculation within the industry. First there were
changes that Sony made to the PS2 configuration, specifically combining the Emotion Engine
CPU and Graphics Synthesizer GPU circuitry into a single, less expensive chip. Second,
there were rumors that Microsoft would announce a price drop for the Xbox at E3 this
I dont think anyone would have predicted such a significant reduction, however.
The drop represents a price cut of 1/3 to a system that, as of right now, is dominating
the market. According to sales figures published in March 2002, the PS2 had sold more than
8.3 million units, and continues to sell around 65,000 per week. As of that time,
Microsoft and Nintendo had sold around a million and a half units, with around 30,000
being sold each week. Is this drop a sign that Sony, whose PS2 hardware is now over a year
old, feels threatened by the Xbox, which has similar functions, such as DVD playback, but
newer hardware that includes an internal hard drive and Ethernet card?
Along with the PS2 console, Sony is also slashing the prices of some of its other
products. PS2 Dual Shock controllers and Memory Cards have dropped from $35 to $25. PSOne
consoles are now $49 (reduced from $99). The PSOne Combo with portable screen is now $149
(from $199). And finally, the PSOne Dual Shock is now $19.99.
As for why Sony decided to do this, without any advanced notice, and only a week before
E3, as well as what Nintendo plans to do now that the mighty PS2 has lowered its price to
that of a Gamecube, we can only speculate. However, we do know one thing for sure: this is
great news for game fans everywhere. Great news, indeed.