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US PlayStation 2 supply won't meet demand says Sony

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Sony has officially set 26 October for the simultaneous release of the PlayStation 2 in Europe and the US. The console company will ship one million machines to each territory for the launch, with three more million boxes being fed into the retail channels throughout 2001, according to UK trade paper CTW. Sony is banking on selling $500 million worth of US sales in the first week of the PlayStation 2's launch, which amounts to well over 1.6 million units, priced at $299 a whack. By the end of December, it expects to have notched up sales of $1.5 billion - or five million units. 'Scuse us, but since Sony is expected to pump four million machines into the US during that period, surely that means either its sales predictions are way out, or quite a few customers are going to have to go without kit until the new year. Certainly many Japanese customers - particularly those ordering PlayStation 2's via the Web or by mail order - were forced to wait a while after the console's debut for their goodies to turn up. If Sony's numbers are anything to go by, it's clearly expecting demand to outstrip its ability to churn out consoles. Sony also confirmed that the US and European PlayStation 2's will feature a modified console capable of hooking up to an expansion unit that will provide slots for an Ethernet card and a 20-30GB 3.5in hard drive. Add-on prices were not given, and while company said the US console would be priced at $299, it didn't reveal UK or European pricing. However, ₤299 seems a reasonable guess. The US and European PlayStation 2s will also ship with DVD software built-in, and not on a Memory Card as per the Japanese model. Faulty MCs prompted a major recall of Cards shortly after the Japanese debut, something Sony clearly wants to avoid this time round. ®

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