Report Suggests $400 PS4 Launch Price; Analyst Says PS3 Could Drop to $199

Published 2 years ago by

PS4 Needs Significant Graphics Leap

Two days ahead of an expected PS4 reveal, new reports suggest that Sony’s next-generation console will launch around an oft-rumored $400 price point. Despite claims from Sony CEO, Kaz Hirai, that the PS3-followup would debut after Microsoft’s next Xbox console, industry insiders and financial analysts expect to see a PS4 announcement this Wednesday (from the time of this writing), February 20, 2013 at Sony’s “See The Future Event.”

In the lead-up to the potential announcement, several news agencies have liquidated their Sony scoop stores – offering insight into what gamers can likely expect to pay for a PS4, when it will be available at retail, and what exactly the console will offeraside from simply “better graphics.” Today’s report gives further credence to prior details suggesting that not only will the PS4 be less expensive at launch than its 2006 predecessor, it will likely be in the ballpark of a $400 price point.

The Times UK has thrown a hat in the PS4 pricing ring, officially asserting that Sony’s new console will come in at around £300 – which is roughly $400 in the United States. A $400 cost is $100 less than the basic model PS3 (20GB) back in November 2006 – which debuted with a $499 price tag. Gamers who have followed this generation’s “console war” know that most insiders credit a lower base price point ($299) and earlier launch date (November 2005) as important keys to Microsoft’s lead this generation. While we don’t yet know when the Xbox 720 will launch or how much it will cost, assuming recent reports are accurate, Sony appears to be taking an aggressive stance in an attempt to not make the same mistake twice.

Sony PS4 Controller Prototype

That said, there are two significant points to keep in mind (aside from the fact that none of this is actually confirmed yet):

1) Even if the European price for the PS4 does turn out to be £300, that doesn’t mean that Sony will price the device by simply adjusting the retail cost through the euro to dollar exchange rate (roughly $401). Instead, Sony could still price the device well-above or below that $400 window. Though, assuming that they’ll want to lower the price over time to attract new buyers (in addition to bumping up hard drive capacity and adding features), a $399 price point does sound like a reasonable place to start.

2) Just because Sony might plan to release a PS4 at $399 doesn’t mean it’ll be the only PS4 on the market at launch (or the one you’ll want). For years, every new generation of consoles has launched with options. As mentioned earlier, both the PS3 and Xbox 360 had base models – and we’ve seen that trend continue with the recent Wii U launch (i.e. the Deluxe versus Basic packages). At this point, there’s no way of knowing what benefits a premium PS4 package would contain (if it even exists) but there’s a very good chance that longtime PlayStation fans won’t want to settle for a basic console – possibly priced around $399. As a result, the must-have version of the console (at launch) could run a higher price – maybe around $499 (though that’s entirely speculation at this point).

Still, one thing is almost for certain, as soon as Sony announces the PS4, late-to-the-party consumers will need added incentive to buy a PS3 – in lieu of waiting until the next-gen console arrives. As a result, it’s no surprise that industry analyst Michael Pachter (talking to GameIndustry.Biz) expects the hardware manufacturer to announce another PS3 price drop in the wake of the PS4 event – meaning the 250 GB PS3 could soon retail at $199.

PS3 Ultra Slim 500GB

Again, no official announcements have been made but price drops for current generation tech often follow next generation console unveilings. If this trend continues, that $199 price point would represent a full $70 dollar drop from the cost of a 250GB PS3 ($269) – and favorably position the console against the comparable Xbox 360 priced at $299 (the 250GB model without Kinect).

Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick.

The Sony “See the Future” Event takes place on February 20, 2013.

Source: The Times UK (via CVG) and GameIndustry.Biz

TAGS: PS3, PS4, Sony

  • Dante

    I’m ok with $400…$600 was crazy (especially with my finances back then).

  • Shalkowski

    $400 is a good, fair price.

  • Alter

    ps3 is already at 199

    • Ben Kendrick

      That’s not true. At least, not officially as a “suggested retail price.”

      The official Sony retail store lists “Refurbished” PS3’s for $199 but an entirely new system starts at $269.

  • Ryuhza

    $400 dollars is mighty fine. Only $100 more than PS2 and 1 at launch, as opposed to the PS3 costing twice as much.

    Bring it Sony!

  • Broad

    I am really looking forward to the ps4 unveiling. However, depending what it offers, we shall see if the supposed 400 dollars price point is reasonable or not. I don’t care if its 50 dollars, if there is no backwards compatibility or if you have to pay to use the Internet it’s a no go for me. It is nice this time around to have money tho. I wasn’t able to get the ps3 until 2 years after its launch due to being financially strapped with school and living expenses. But I’m pretty sure most of you don’t give a crap about my personal life, so I’m going to stop talking now.

  • shycat

    If they do price drop the PS3,then i could certainly return to sony and finally get me one. At this point with all the rumors rampant about next gen consoles, i would not both with them right now plus i would not personally put down 400 on a system unless if i wanted that console bad.

  • XxStoicMonkeyxX

    Why don’t they just pull a nintendo move and allow external HDD like the Wii U?

  • Bradilio

    If Sony blocks used games, PS4 will be a flop…a MAJOR flop.

    • Ranter

      I agree they went after hacked games and they won now they are going after used games? That’s ridiculous and what’s next they are going to block people from buying pre-owned systems? With the advancement of technology these pathetic companies are using it to their advantage while ripping off people that are trying to survive in the world.

  • a rock

    huh? 360’s lead? the wii lead the current generation’s console war and it wasnt even close

  • Jak Frost

    idk about all that because my friends computer is almost similar to the specs in the ps4 and he spent at least a grand on it.

  • andrew

    it’s rubbish at 400 dollars cause the price when it comes to europe will be the same or more,it needs to be cheaper if you convert say 299 euro,but the local gamestop has stated that they are gonna be retailing it at 450 euro which seems ridiculous

  • james braselton

    hi there payed $600 for my ps3