Do we have to pay the $391?
I am pretty sure that everyone reading this article is aware of the current rumor about the Playstation 2's price. If you haven't yet got the scoop, here is the update and some of my opinions on this matter. Just to refresh your memories, a few days ago Merrill Lynch, the big financial institute got into the the gaming industry and estimated the price of the next generation system. They came up with a price tag of 45,000 in Japanese Yen which is the equivalent of $391 in US currency.
The assumption brought up a lot of talks about the overhyped price and that it is too much for the average gamer to digest. It seems to me that the people living in Japan don't care about the crazy prices as long as they got the technology in their homes. For example take a look at the situation with the Sony's smart robotic dog. This dog was sold within 20 minutes in Japan for a price of about $2500. There was a very limited number of them available and more than half were kept in Japan and the rest were sent out to America. Although the toy did sell out in US with the help of the big population, it didn't even come close to the rate of sales in Japan.
Even with the price of $400, Playstation 2 will do very good in Japan but this price won't do the job in the United States. The $400 mark should only give you the goose bumps if you are planning to get the import version of PSX 2 and that's when you pay the big bucks. If you are going to wait for the US release sometime in mid to late year 2000, you can surely stay calm and expect to see the price of the US release to be below $250.
The time between the release dates in Japan and US, will give Sony and Toshiba plenty of time to make the production more efficient. Don't forget that everything in the technology world gets cheaper day by day and the technology behind the new Playstation is not an exception. If it costs the developers less to make this machine, the savings are passed on to us.