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10/13/2008
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No PS3 Holiday Price Cut, Sony Exec Admits

The least-expensive PS3 sells for $399, which is twice the price of the cheapest Xbox 360.

A Sony executive says the company doesn't plan to cut prices for the PlayStation 3 video-game console before Christmas, despite Microsoft's recent move to slash prices for the Xbox 360 by as much as 30%.

Kazuo Hirai, president and group chief executive of Sony Computer Entertainment, told the Financial Times in Tokyo that the PS3 is already a far better value than rivals half its prices.

"The answer is yes, if you're asking, 'Are these the prices we're going with this Christmas?'" Hirai said in an interview with the newspaper.

The least-expensive PS3 sells for $399, which is twice the price of the cheapest Xbox 360. Microsoft in September cut the price of the Xbox 360 Arcade nearly 30%, to $199 from $279. In gearing up for the holiday-buying season, Microsoft also dropped the price of the basic Xbox 360 model, which features a 60-GB hard drive, to $299 from $349; and lowered the price of the Xbox 360 Elite, which includes a 120-GB hard drive, to $399 from $449.

Along with the Xbox, the PS3 also competes with Nintendo's Wii console, which sells for $250.

The Christmas season accounts for a major portion of retailers' annual sales, and the video-game industry is no exception. Sony is apparently banking that people will be willing to pay more for the PS3, which is arguably a more sophisticated console than its rivals.

Hirai pointed out that the low-end Xbox 360 has no hard drive, and the PS3 has a built-in player for high-definition Blu-ray movies. "When you really compare apples to apples, then I think we have a very good value proposition," he told the Financial Times.

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