Almost two years after the system launched, this is not the price revision we were hoping for.

For the past few video game console generations, consumers have been able to count on the base system eventually getting a price cut. It makes sense, really. What was cutting-edge technology at the system’s launch becomes easier and less expensive to produce, and since software sales and subscription fees are where video game companies really make their profits, getting the system into as many homes as possible is usually the primary goal when it comes to hardware pricing.

So with the PlayStation 5’s second birthday coming up this November, the timing feels just about right for Sony to announce a new price for the machine. And sure enough, the company has, but in a shocking, and unhappy twist, it’s going to be raising the price.

Announced via a post on the official PlayStation Blog, price increases are coming for several regions around the globe. In Japan, the price of the Digital Edition PlayStation 5 will rise 5,500 yen (US$41), from 43,978 yen to 49,478 yen. If you’re a physical media loyalist who’s interested in the version that comes with a disc drive, you’re looking at a identical 5,550-yen jump from 54,978 yen to 60,478 yen, which works out to price bumps of 12.5 and 10 percent, respectively.

The statement, written by Sony Interactive Entertainment president and CEO Jim Ryan, says

“The global economic environment is a challenge that many of you around the world are no doubt experiencing. We’re seeing high global inflation rates, as well as adverse currency trends, impacting consumers and creating pressure on many industries. Based on these challenging economic conditions, SIE has made the difficult decision to increase the recommended retail price (RRP) of PlayStation 5 in select markets.”

Aside from Japan, PS5 prices will be rising in
● U.K.: New prices £389.99 (digital)/ £479.99 (disc drive)
● Canada: CAD $519.99 / CAD $649.99
● Australia: AUD $649.95 / AUD $799.95
● Europe: €449.99 / €549.99
● China: 3,499 yuan / 4,299 yuan
● Mexico: MXN $12,499 / MXN $14,999

Gamers in the U.S. can breathe easy, for the time being anyway, as the announcement makes a point of stating “There will be no price increase in the United States.” Still, it’s a startling development, as in decades of gaming, I can’t remember a time when a console actually went up in price without some sort of associated performance enhancement (such as the Switch OLED Model, PS4 Pro, or TurboDuo).

So far, Japan is the only territory for which a date for the price change has been announced: September 15, meaning that anyone looking to grab a PS5 before the price hike had better keep their fingers crossed that they can actually find one for sale in the next two and a half weeks.

Source: PlayStation Blog
Top image: Pakutaso
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