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Sony cuts $50 off the PS3, reducing standard model to $250

PlayStation 3Today’s gaming market is nothing if not fluid. With new developers and platforms springing up everywhere, major players like Sony have fought tooth and nail to keep their market share. Today Sony announced at the Gamescon Conference in Germany that it will cut $50 off the 160 GB Playstation 3 to $249; the 320 GB model will now be $299.

All this is on the heels of the Nintendo 3DS price drop just last week.

The last time Sony reduced the price of the Playstation 3 was in 2009 when the Playstation 3 Slim caused them to adjust price points.

The move sets Sony up as a lower cost alternative to the Microsoft Xbox 360 well in time for the holiday season. The Xbox 360 has had pole position on the Playstation 3 for some time now and shows few signs of letting up.

Also, with an economy that never quite seems to get on a path to recovery, Sony is likely targeting the large swaths of consumers that have dropped out of the gaming market due to cost all-together. According to the NPD group, this past July saw the lowest sales of computer and console games since October of 2006.

How Microsoft reacts from here, especially with the continued success of Xbox live, remains to be seen.