Sony warns PlayStation consoles might get more expensive if the trade war continues

The US-China trade war could soon impact gamers.

Eli Blumenthal Senior Editor
Eli Blumenthal is a senior editor at CNET with a particular focus on covering the latest in the ever-changing worlds of telecom, streaming and sports. He previously worked as a technology reporter at USA Today.
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Eli Blumenthal
2 min read

PlayStations made in China could cost more. 

James Martin/CNET

If the US-China trade war continues to escalate, consumers could soon find themselves paying more for PlayStations. As with other electronics giants, Sony manufacturers most of its consoles in China, with the company warning that if a new round of higher tariffs goes into effect, the price for its game console may go up. 

"We believe, and therefore have told the US government, that higher tariffs would ultimately damage the US economy," Hiroki Totoki, Sony's chief financial officer, told The Wall Street Journal. Totoki added that the company hasn't decided yet how it would handle additional tariffs, but said that it may have consumers share some of the cost. 

In May President Trump raised US import tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods from 10% to 25%, threatening to place additional tariffs on another $300 billion of Chinese exports, which would include video games. The US and China resumed trade talks Tuesday. 

It is unclear if the tariffs Totoki warned about will be for consoles only or if it would also cover games and accessories produced in China. Last month Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo sent a letter to the Office of the United States Trade Representative asking for game consoles to be removed from future tariffs, arguing that it would stifle innovation, harm consumers and threaten jobs.

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Sony did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

News of a possible price hike comes shortly after Sony revealed that the PlayStation 4 was the fastest console ever to reach 100 million units shipped, with the company sending out another 3.2 million units during the most recent quarter. The PlayStation 4 Slim starts at $250, while the more powerful PlayStation 4 Pro currently starts at $399. Sony's next-gen console, likely called the PlayStation 5, is expected next year.

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