A far more enticing pack-in than last year's "Talladega Nights"  (Source: Amazon)
$399 PlayStation 3 possibly on the way with Spider-Man 3

Now with supplies of the 60GB PlayStation 3 dwindling, analysts are predicting that the 80GB PS3 will soon drop to $499 to occupy the current cost-of-entry into Sony’s newest console. Even at with the 80GB hard drive and included game MotorStorm, consumers may still feel that $499 is still too much to pay for a games console – especially when the competition is offering current machines for hundreds less.

Sony knows that this holiday season will be even more crucial than last year’s launch window, as it will be the time to convince more than just PlayStation faithful to buy into their new generation. According to an Ars Technica source, Sony will not only drop the 80GB machine down $100 to $499, but it will also introduce a new entry-level 40GB offering that will come in at another $100 less at $399 – Just $50 more than Microsoft’s 20GB Xbox 360.

Furthermore, Sony may sweeten the deal by bundling with either one or both SKUs with Spider-Man 3 on Blu-ray Disc. Packaging in the super-hero blockbuster will further underscore the PlayStation 3’s duality with its high-definition movie player capabilities (not to mention the shared font style between the console and movie). Those looking to buy into Blu-ray Disc may view the Spider-Man 3 PS3 bundle as a strong value proposition. Spider-Man 3 hits home video on October 30, 2007, so don’t expect Sony to announce anything until then.

For consumers wanting to game on the cheap, Sony realizes that its PlayStation 2 is still a stunningly strong seller. For that reason, it would not be surprising if Sony dropped the price of its PS2 console to $99, as suggested by the report. With even stronger value PS3 bundles, to cheaper PS2, and newly redesigned PSP, Sony is gunning hard for a strong fall and winter.

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