Way back on September 12, we reported on rumors that Sony would be releasing a $400 40GB PS3/Spider-Man 3 Blu-ray bundle for the holidays. The not-so-secret new system has now been officially announced by Sony, with a November 2nd launch date in the North America. At the same time--effective immediately--the current 80GB model will be available in North America for $500.
In Sony's press release, CEO Jack Tretton is quoted as saying, "We're pleased to offer the consumer a lower price point without sacrificing the core technology components that make PS3 the most advanced high-definition entertainment system available. Every PS3 comes with a Blu-ray drive, HDMI output, an integrated Wi-Fi connection, Cell Broadband Engine and a built-in hard-drive." As previously reported, however, the new 40GB PS3 won't offer any form of backward capability with PS2 games. (Read John Falcone's earlier post for a full report on the issue).
As I've said before, if Sony hoped to compete with the XBox 360 and Wii during the holiday season, it had to hit the $400 price point. Some readers scoffed that the inclusion of the Spider-Man 3 Blu-ray wasn't exactly a big selling point, considering the movie sucked. Also weighing heavily on Sony is the lack of a true breakout (exclusive) title that gives fence-sitters a little more sense of urgency to buy the system.
What do you think? With the XBox 360's reliability problems, is $400 the magic price point for the PS3 and its built-in Blu-ray player? Or are the games what matter in the end (i.e., Halo 3, BioShock, and the upcoming Mass Effect)?