November 17, 2006 - Earlier today, the PlayStation 3 launched in North America to much fanfare. Around the country, people lined up in numbers far exceeding the supply of the system. Sony held midnight-launch extravaganzas in New York and San Francisco where thousands of fans lined the streets on November 16 waiting to be among the first PS3 owners as it went on sale at midnight. Celebrity appearances by Grammy Award-winner Ludacris and Chapelle Show's Charlie Murphy entertained the New York crowds, while musical act Angels and Airwaves rocked throughout the night in San Francisco.
"With today's launch of PS3, we are officially ushering in a new era in true next-generation entertainment for homes all across North America," said Kaz Hirai, president and CEO of SCEA. "The innovative PS3 system features powerful technologies and capabilities that have never been brought together in one system, including the Cell Broadband Engine, BD drive, HDD and online connectivity as standard features of every system. The results are breathtaking new interactive worlds to explore, eye-popping multimedia functionality, and a fully integrated online experience -- all in high- definition clarity. The value we are providing consumers with PS3 is beyond compare."
Initial launch shipments were admittedly low for Sony's new console, as eager fans were forced to wait numerous days in some locations just to secure themselves a unit. Ebay resales of PS3s have hit highs of several thousands of dollars, as gamers scramble to secure a unit before the grueling shortage that will undoubtedly follow the console's launch.
"We're thrilled that PlayStation fans are anxious to get their hands on PS3 and are working around the clock to meet that demand with additional shipments during the busy holiday season and beyond," said Jack Tretton of SCEA. "With the incredible technology and value packed into PS3, we expect rapid adoption of the system around the world, and we are ready to support that market growth."
The PlayStation 3 is retailing at two different SKUs, one with a 20 GB hard drive priced at $499.99 and one with a 60 GB hard drive priced at $599.99.