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Sony Stops Selling 20, 60 GB PS3s in Japan

Sony Computer Entertainment has announced (Japanese) it will stop shipments of 20 and 60 GB PlayStation 3 video game consoles in Japan this month, leaving the 40 GB alone in the market place. Historically, Sony tends to roll out changes to its PlayStation lineup in its home soil of Japan before the rest of the world, leading to speculate 20 and 60 GB PlayStations aren’t long for the U.S., European, and Asian markets either. However, Sony also announced it intends to launch new PS3 models in the future.

Translated, Sony’s statement on the transition reads in part: “Sony will vigorously promote the expansion of the PS3 platform by further concentrating on the 40GB HDD (CECHH00 Series) model introduced in November 2007, equipped with the core technology components that make PS3 the most advanced high-definition entertainment system while realizing lower power consumption.”

Sony is hoping 2008 will be the year the PS3 comes to dominate console sales, and is promising a series of high-profile titles exclusive to the platform, including Metal Gear Solid 4. According to Sony, the company sold 1.2 million PS3 consoles over the 2007 end-of-year holiday season, along with 1.3 million PS2s and 1.4 million PSPs. “The strong PS3 sales also further establish Blu-ray’s dominant position as the high-definition medium of choice for games and movies,” said Sony president and CEO Jack Tretton, in a statement. “Consumers are clearly responding to the expanding multimedia capabilities and a great line-up of over 200 games.”