Sony blames inflation for PlayStation 5 price hike

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Sony Interactive Entertainment is raising the price of the popular PlayStation 5 console in select markets amid a challenging global economic environment.

"We’re seeing high global inflation rates, as well as adverse currency trends, impacting consumers and creating pressure on many industries," Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan said in a blog post on Thursday. "Based on these challenging economic conditions, SIE has made the difficult decision to increase the recommended retail price (RRP) of PlayStation 5 in select markets across Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA), Asia-Pacific (APAC), Latin America (LATAM), as well as Canada."

According to the video game giant, the majority of the price hikes will take effect immediately. The exception is in Japan, which will take effect on Sept. 15. There will be no price increase in the United States.

The price increases and total cost of the PS5 disc version are:

Europe: 50 euros ($49.75) to 549.99 euros

U.K.: 30 pounds ($35.39) to 479.99 pounds

Australia: 50 Australian dollars ($34.52) to 799.95 Australian dollars

Canada: 20 Canadian dollars ($15.40) to 649.99 Canadian dollars

Mexico: 1,000 pesos ($50.12) to 14,999 pesos

China: 400 yuan ($58.29) to 4,299 yuan

Japan: 5,000 yen ($36.53) to 54,980 yen

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The price increases and total cost for the digital version are:

Europe: 50 euros to 449.99 euros

U.K.: 30 pounds to 389.99 pounds

Australia: 50 Australian dollars to 649.95 Australian dollars

Canada: 20 Canadian dollars to 519.99 Canadian dollars

Mexico: 1,000 pesos to 12,499 pesos

China: 400 yuan to 3,499 yuan

Japan: 5,000 yen to 44,980 yen

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Two PlayStation 5 consoles with controllers are shown. (Sony Interactive Entertainment / Fox News)

The move comes as customer demand for the PS5 has outpaced supply since its launch in November 2020.

"While this price increase is a necessity given the current global economic environment and its impact on SIE’s business, our top priority continues to be improving the PS5 supply situation so that as many players as possible can experience everything that PS5 offers and what’s still to come," Ryan said.

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Last year, Sony announced that the PS5 was its fastest-selling console in history after surpassing 10 million sold units in July. According to data from Ampere Analysis, Sony sold 21 million PS5s worldwide by the end of June 2022, compared to 13.8 million of Microsoft’s Xbox Series consoles.

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SONY SONY GROUP CORP. 85.26 +1.10 +1.31%

Ampere's research director for games, Piers Harding-Rolls, predicts the price hike will have a minimal impact on PS5 sales despite the disappointment from customers. However, he noted that it will give some advantage to Microsoft.

"At this stage there is no indication that Microsoft will be increasing its prices for the Xbox Series console," Harding-Rolls said in a blog post on Thursday. "Undoubtedly, Microsoft will take advantage of Sony’s increase to push its ‘value’ message, especially around the Xbox Series S, Game Pass and its All Access offer as we enter the holiday shopping season."

Sony expects to sell 18 million units of the PS5 in fiscal year 2022.

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