PS3 finally unveiled

Sony will expose thePlayStation 3's final details to the world tomorrow, including the confirmed release date, launch price and online features.

The next-gen details will be revealed during a meeting - which was originally off-limits to the press - in Japan on Wednesday, March 15. Now that Sony has opened the doors to the media, expectations are high for an in-depth official announcement for PS3's launch and pricing.

While it might be surprising that Sony would choose such a low-profile event for such a high-profile broadcast, PS3 has failed to make a real appearance since 2005's E3 games show last May. If Sony doesn't clarify any PS3 details until this year's E3 it would effectively rule out any chance of the spring release officially planned for the console.

A delay was apparently confirmed by Japan's Nihon Kezai Shimbun newspaper, which reported today that the launch is being put off until November because the copy-protection technology for Blu-ray discs still hasn't been finalized.

In addition, Taiwanese manufacturer COMPEQ has received an order to mass produce a fundamental part of PS3's architecture - crucially, the production line is set to begin in June or July of this year, according to a Chinese technology website.

By making a surprise announcement and unveiling the final details tomorrow, Sony could gloss over any delay to the PS3 launch date and create a buzz of excitement leading into E3.

March 14, 2006