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Lower spec PS3 soon the only option

Oct 8, 2007

PlayStation 3 will eventually be available only as a stripped down 40GB version, Sony has revealed today. From Wednesday, there'll be two PS3s to choose from - the newly announced 40GB at %26pound;299, and the full-spec 60GB Value Pack at %26pound;349. Butoncethe existing 60GB consolesare gone, they're gone for good.

"As the 60GB stock is depleted the %26pound;299 40GB option will be the only version available," a Sony spokesperson has confirmed to us. This lower spec option will feature two USBs (instead of four), no card/stick reader and zero backwards compatibility.

"The only functionality that is being removed is backwards compatibility," Sony's statement reads, "and this is because we believe this less important now than when we launched,as there will be 65 PS3 games available by Christmas. Furthermore we believe we should now be devoting our resources to the future of PlayStation gaming and delivering next generation experiences".

The cutting of USBs is irksome, but not fatal. And a bigger HDD drive, for instance, can be purchased seperately. Dropping backwards compatibility, though, threatens to reignite the argument that still splits the GamesRadar office down the middle. Though, according to Sony, the dropped features are "a result of extensive feedback and research".

If we were cynical, we'd suggest that axing the 60GB version clears the decks for Sony to construct a Dual Shock 3-bundled, big ol' HDD-boasting PS3 pack when the new controller launches next year. On this evidence, though, such an offering would be unlikely to return backwards compatibility to the features list.