Will the real PlayStation 3 price please stand up?

With the world going a little nutty Wednesday over Microsoft's announcement of the pricing for its forthcoming Xbox 360 consoles, Sony and its equally exciting and equally forthcoming PlayStation 3 were mere afterthoughts.

Most people had thought pricing for the two consoles would still be secret for some time, but Microsoft dashed those expectations with its revelation in Germany Wednesday. That leaves Sony--and Nintendo, of course, whose Revolution console will launch next year--as having products over whose pricing everyone can still play the speculation game.

But according to the video game blog, Joystiq, the PS3's pricing may have already been revealed without anyone noticing. Indeed, a glance at the world's largest bookseller, Amazon.com, reveals that the PS3 is slated to cost $299.99, the same price as the low-end Xbox 360 core system.

Of course, another glance shows that Amazon has no pricing for the PS3.

A call late Wednesday to Amazon was not immediately returned, but Sony said it hadn't announced any pricing and has no immediate plans to.

"Maybe they intended it to be a placeholder," said Sony spokesperson Janette Barrios. "You'd have to ask" Amazon.

So what's going on here? Amazon's site tells us two different things, Sony declaims any knowledge of the situation at all, and the rest of the video game universe is too busy trying to figure out if Microsoft can make money on the Xbox 360 to care about anything else.

Barrios is probably right: Someone at Amazon probably did set up the page as a placeholder, perhaps after the Microsoft announcement Wednesday morning and in anticipation of Sony announcing it would meet the under $300 (even if only by a penny) challenge. It's impossible to tell, though, because Joystiq's post went live at 5:30 pm eastern time Wednesday and there's no way to know how long the Amazon page listing the $299.99 price has been up.

 

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