Sony is raising the prices of the PlayStation 5 console in many regions, effective immediately

Increase / Want to buy one of these in many parts of the world? Starting today, it will cost a little more.

Sam Machkovech

Early Thursday morning, Sony announced some big news for the PlayStation 5 family of consoles. All over the world, console prices are on the rise.

Price hikes for both PlayStation 5 models (one with a disc drive, one without) are taking effect immediately in at least six regions, with Japan joining the price hike on September 15. Sony announcement lists specific price increases for some of the biggest gaming territories, but additionally warns that “select markets” could see their own price spikes in the coming days. These include territories in Asia Pacific, Central and South America, and a massive cluster of countries that includes EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa).

Either way, one particular region is out of Sony’s price hike sights for now: the United States.

PS5 price increase August 2022
New Old man Percentage increase
Europe 549.99 euros 499.99 euros 10
Europe (all digital) 449.99 euros 399.99 euros 12.5
Great Britain 479.99 pounds 449.99 pounds 6.7
United Kingdom (all digital) 389.99 pounds 359.99 pounds 8.3
Japan* 54,980 yen 49,980 yen 10
Japan (all digital)* 44,980 yen 39,980 yen 12.5
China 4299 yuan 3,899 yuan 10.3
China (all digital) 3499 yuan 3099 yuan 12.9
Australia A$799.95 A$749.95 6.7
Australia (all digital) A$649.95 A$599.95 8.3
Mexico 14,999 Mexican dollars 13,999 Mexican dollars 7.1
Mexico (all digital) 12,499 Mexican dollars 11,499 Mexican dollars 8.7
Canada 649.99 Canadian dollars 629.99 Canadian dollars 3.2
Canada (all digital) 519.99 Canadian dollars 499.99 Canadian dollars 4

* The price increase in Japan will not take effect until September 15, 2022.

The price increase appears to be a fixed amount of currency in each affected region for both PS5 models. So, percentage-wise, today’s news hit harder with the more affordable PS5 models without disc drives. Canada is the easiest to deal with today’s percentage increase, while Europe, Japan, and China are among the steepest PS5 price increases.

Sony attributes the overall rise in prices to two main economic factors: rising inflation and a historic low in the Japanese yen. US purchasing power doesn’t appear to be immune to either of these issues, so it’s unclear whether Sony’s assurances that “there will be no price increases in the United States” are ironclad.

Bad news for the upcoming PSVR2?

The price hike follows similar news from virtual reality division Meta, which has decided to raise prices on its Quest 2 VR system late last month. Meta tried to soften the impact of the overall $100 price hike by including a free download of its popular rhythm action game Beat Saberwhich normally retails for $30.

At the time of publication, Sony did not anticipate that it would include any free downloads in its own price increase plan, although the price jump currently does not exceed 13 percent in any region, in contrast to Meta’s price increases of 25 or 33 percent, depending on the model.

It’s interesting that Sony Tuesday’s launch window will see the announcement of the next virtual reality system, the PlayStation VR2, did not offer a retail price. Perhaps Sony is keeping this news under wraps to buy more time to price this PS5 addition in today’s market realities. (This may prompt a rethink our recent PSVR2 pricing speculation.)

Ars Technica’s Kyle Orland recently explored the history of console pricing, although his analysis mostly revolved around the Nintendo Switch, a 2017 console that has had years to grow in terms of value for money. If this mega-selling console had followed historical console pricing trends, Orland’s analysis suggests that its price could drop to between $150 and $180 in the United States. Still, a combination of economic factors, including chip shortages and unusually high demand for the years-old gaming system, has helped the Switch stick firmly to its original MSRP worldwide.

Orlando’s report was prompted in part by Nintendo’s recent assurances to investors and financial authorities in its native Japan that the price of the Switch will not rise in the near future. Neither Sony nor Microsoft’s Xbox division made similar promises ahead of Thursday’s PS5 news. Microsoft enjoys several advantages over Sony in the same inflation-ridden market: namely, a more diverse financial portfolio, more than double Sony’s cash reserves, and much less dependence on the Japanese yen. Time will tell if Microsoft will continue to absorb inflation-related costs by keeping the prices of its own Xbox consoles static.

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