Scott Banerjee at MarketWatch:
Sony Corp. on Thursday said it is reducing the price of the PlayStation 2 video game console to $129 from $149 in a move that effectively paves the way for the introduction of its next-generation PlayStation 3 hardware.
The move comes on the heels of a recent price reduction of its PlayStation Portable handheld console. It should open up the spotlight for the Japan-based electronics giant to showcase the PlayStation 3 console at E3, the video-game industry’s trade show held in May.
The cut was expected and also helps hold the line against the Xbox 360. By way of perspective:
The PlayStation 2 is easily the world’s most popular video-game console, having sold more than 101 million units, compared with 24 million Microsoft Xbox units and 21 million Nintendo GameCube units. In the U.S., the PS2 commands a market share of more than 55%, according to NPD Group.
Although Xbox 360 shipments have been slower than expected, Microsoft maintains it is on track to meet a global distribution target of 4.5 million to 5.5 million units by the end of June.