An anonymous Best Buy employee yesterday leaked an internal memo
that showed the retailer was planning to no longer stock and distribute the 80GB Sony PlayStation 3 as of January 28. This quickly sparked rumors that that the console is moving to a single SKU retail option in the US.
Although Sony has yet to comment on the buzz, sticking with a single, cheaper model actually makes sense if they want to concentrate on getting costs down. To further validate this, North America is the only region that still supports a multi-system lineup as Japan and the UK have already dropped the higher capacity models in favor of the cheaper 40GB model. Of course, this would also mean future PS3 buyers will be left out with no memory card readers, and no backwards compatibility for PS2 software.
Let’s not forget, however, that they have also said they will “continue to evaluate consumer demand and market trends,” and may introduce more PlayStation 3 models in the future based on that feedback.