Game Consoles Affordable In Time For Holidays

Now that class is back in session and the overwhelm of “Back to School” sales has ground to a halt, the Christmas shopping season is already shifting into gear.  Sony has gotten a jump start on the holiday by cutting a hundred dollars from the price tag of its PlayStation 3.  The cut, and the advertising barrage than accompanied it, boosted PS3 sales by three hundred percent in the last three weeks of August alone, with revenue process up by 140 percent.  That figure is lower than the unit-sales figure because of the price drop, and still remarkable due to that fact.

Other game console companies have belatedly joined the game in an effort to match Sony’s breakthrough surge.  A similar hundred-dollar price drop has been applied to Xbox’s 360 Elite, with Nintendo scrambling to do the same.  For the first time since its debut, the Wii has lowered its prices to $199, a fifty-dollar savings from the original sales price.

Sony will also lead the console maker gang in the lowering of international sales prices, lowering the PSP price tag by fifteen percent.  Other companies are expected to follow suit in foreign markets as well.

The key advantage to the lowering of console prices is that the PS3 and its brethren have finally dropped beneath the “glass ceiling” of Christmas shopping budgets for most parents.  Three hundred dollars is generally considered the highest amount a parent is willing to sacrifice on a gift, to quiet the insistence of an overenthusiastic child.

That fact, and the simple excitement of a more affordably priced big-ticket item for kids during holiday season, has retailers very excited.  When Black Friday hits this November, huge advertising efforts are expected, and it’s predictable that last year’s console shortage will be revisited in 2009.  The big question will be which console system runs out of stock first.

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