Our friends over at Gamespot posted a blog yesterday discussing the likelihood of a rumored $400 PS3 that would arrive in time for the holidays. The entry links to a story on Ars Technica about how the PlayStation 3's sales are slowing again after a brief burst of momentum following the price drop to $500 on the 60GB version of the console. Analysts are already predicting that Sony will soon drop the price of the 80GB PS3 to $500 and one of Ars Technica's "reliable" moles is saying that Sony will also bring out a $400 PS3 that ships with a 40GB hard drive and come bundled with the Spider-Man 3 Blu-ray. And lastly, Sony will drop the PS2's price to $100 (from $130).
As PS3 rumors go, this one's hardly outlandish and seems like the logical next step for Sony as it tries to make up some ground to Nintendo and Microsoft in the console wars heading into the holiday buying season. In fact, Sony has to make this move soon--Halo 3, an XBox 360 exclusive, hits stores Sept. 25 and mega-hit Bioshock is already out there (it's sold 1.5 million copies). True, Sony has a few alluring exclusives, including Warhawk, Heavenly Sword, and Uncharted: Drake's Fortune (Unreal Tournament 3 will be a temporary exclusive), but none of those titles has true break-out potential, so Sony has to play the price card to compete. An ad campaign alluding to all the XBox 360 hardware troubles might help, too.
Can the combo of a price drop and Spidey 3 get PS3 fence-sitters off the fence? I think the answer is yes, especially for anyone also on the fence about buying a next-gen DVD player. Maybe not a resounding yes, but Sony should be able to move plenty of units. And for all of you who hate Sony, just remember, at $400 (and even at $500) the company is taking a significant loss on each PS3 sold. So, if you really want to hurt Sony, buy a PS3 and don't ever buy a game or Blu-ray disc.