Sony recently discontinued its $499 PlayStation 3 console in North America because of poor sales, leaving the more expensive $599 model as the firm's only next-gen console. However, a reduction in the console's manufacturing costs could be a catalyst for an eventual price cut. According to DigiTimes, Taiwanese manufacturers expect such a reduction to occur with respect to blue-laser pick-up heads used by the PS3's integrated Blu-ray drive. The pick-ups are expected to increase in supply and decrease in price, which DigiTimes says could allow Sony to trim the PS3's production costs by as much as $100. For reference, research firm iSuppli estimates that the $599 PS3 costs $840.35 to produce. Microsoft'sXbox 360 Elite, by contrast, is estimated to cost just $323.30.
Update: iSuppli tells us the $323.30 figure applies to the $399 Xbox 360, not the new Xbox 360 Elite. The research firm also points out that those estimates are about six months old.
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