Sony: Europe PS3 still set for March

Spokesperson confirms the console's still good to go in Europe as planned, despite Stringer's claims of a push back to April.

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European gamers have had to wait a long time for the PlayStation 3. Whereas the next-gen console launched last year in Japan on November 11 and in the US on November 17, it was announced that the European launch would be delayed until March 2007.

But since the original delay, Sony has been sticking firmly to the March release date, despite "once bitten, twice shy" media coverage speculation that further delays would be likely.

So Europeans were less than pleased, although not all that surprised, to find that Sony CEO Howard Stringer said in an interview on GameSpot's sister Web site CNET, that "the European launch in April...is very important to us." April, after all, is not March.

But a Sony spokesperson today dismissed the April date, by telling journalists, "[President of SCEE] David Reeves has confirmed again today that we are still on course for a March release."

And a spokesperson for SCEA explained, "In a recent interview, Sir Howard Stringer stated that the launch for the PS3 in Europe and other PAL countries is slated for April. Sir Howard meant to say the launch was set for "this Spring." The release for the PS3 in Europe and other PAL countries remains March."

Today Sony's Irish PS3 Web site also quoted a price for the console of 629.99 euros (approximately $815) for the 60GB model, a price higher than the previously confirmed 599 euros ($775) for Europe. Sony stated that this was due to Ireland's VAT rate, which is currently 21 percent, and not any pricing changes by Sony.

The spokesperson added that a specific date and pricing would be announced at the beginning of next week.

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