updated 08:25 am EDT, Tue October 9, 2007
40GB PS3 and DS3 in Japan
SCEI this morning made Japan the second region to offer the 40GB PlayStation 3 after Europe, launching the new model but also adding extras previously unseen in any territory. The 40GB model itself is unchanged from the European version and cuts storage, the multi-format card reader, and two USB ports to trim costs; Wi-Fi carries over from the 60GB model. In exchange, Japanese buyers can now pickup a ceramic white model with a matching SIXAXIS wireless controller. Both it and a version in the original black will be available in the country for $341 on November 11th bundled with a copy of Spiderman 3 on Blu-Ray. A US release date is expected soon but is unlikely to include the white color scheme.
Significantly, Sony's home territory of Japan will also be the first to receive the Dual Shock 3, which returns rumble feedback to the company's gamepad while keeping the Bluetooth wireless and motion-sensitive input of the SIXAXIS controller which still comes standard with the PS3. The Dual Shock 3 will only be available as an optional $47 device but will ship on the same November 11th release date as the 40GB PS3 in matching black or white, arriving in time for the release of supporting games like Gran Turismo 5 Prologue.
Like other regions, Sony intends to phase out its remaining lower-cost models and is both cutting prices bundling Spiderman 3 to provide an added incentive. Both the 60GB console and the now Japan-only 20GB version will drop by about $43 to reach prices of $469 and $384 respectively when the deal takes effect on October 17th. Only 200,000 copies of the movie will be available along with both these older models and the 40GB PS3, Sony says.