The PlayStation 3 Launches In Incredibly Expensive Brazil

Illustration for article titled The PlayStation 3 Launches In Incredibly Expensive Brazil

Nine months after the official launch of the PlayStation 2 in Brazil, Sony brings the high-definition magic of the PlayStation 3 to the South American country, with a launch price of roughly $1130, $278 less than originally planned.

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Video games are expensive in Brazil. When the PlayStation 2 launched there last November, the asking price for the then nine-year-old system was around $461.

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So it makes sense that the PlayStation 3 carry a higher price tag. Today the 120GB PlayStation 3 Slim goes on sale at Sony Style stores around the country for 1,999 Brazil Reais, which at current exchange rates equals approximately $1,130. Pretty steep, but it could have been worse.

According to Anderson Gracias, division manager of Sony PlayStation Brazil, the original price was to be 2,499 Brazil Reais, or $1,408. In order to stay competitive with the Xbox 360, which sells for R $999 to R $1,599 in the country, Sony is subsidizing part of the cost.

Brazil will get the PlayStation Network in three phases, beginning in 2011 with a Portuguese translation. Then Brazilian content will be added, and finally the service will be tweaked to work with the services available in the country.

Edit: Updated the headline with the correct amount. Originally listed $500, but meant 500 Reais. Also added R in frotn of Xbox 360 prices to indicate Reais.

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Update: Reader Joaquim notes that unofficial imported versions of the PlayStation 3 Slim 120GB unit currently retail for R $1,299, or $734 USD. These units only carry the three month warranty required by law, and will not be supported by Sony.

For $ 1,999, Sony Style starts selling PS3 in Brazil on Wednesday [UOL Jogos (translated from Portuguese) - Thanks Claudio!]

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DISCUSSION

I think I explained about this on another product, but here goes again:

The problem with imported electronics in Brazil is that we have this tax that sums about 60% the value of the product PLUS shipping costs...

So, sometimes the tax ends up costing even more than the entire product, since shipping isn't exactly cheap depending on size and weight.

Sadly, considering how much the first PS3 sold in Brazil, that price (while still being expensive as hell) is kinda cheap.

Can you believe that one of the first imported PS3 units sold in Brazil cost about 4500 USDs?

Yep.

I remember quite well... lots of people of the brazillian gaming community joked about how the guy that payed all that must love Talladega Nights, etc...

We have one of the most expensive iPods in the world.

It's mostly an internal market protection measure, but unjustified in so many ways I can't even start listing...

I must also say that we have a big clandestine market that covers most electronics, and is also one of the main reasons why we have such a rampant piracy when it comes to games and movies. The whole piracy culture in Brazil was created mainly due to heavy taxation of all things imported.

There has been changes overtime, mostly negative (including even more products and raising taxes), but earlier this month the government announced a slight change benefitting consumers - people who are returning to Brazil can now bring back a small camera, watch and cellphone with them for "personal use" without paying tax on those.

There's a 500$ by air limit, and 300$ by ground... everything that's over that is taxed. If I'm not mistaken, the limit for stuff purchased online and sent by mail drops to 50$.

It's a HUGE pain in the ass for people like me who has to buy stuff outside simply because there's NO OPTION to buy in Brazil.

For instance, dSLR camera equipment. Very few stores in Brazil have those, and their catalog is incredibly limited...

Not to mention book titles, DVDs (think criterion collection among others), laptop parts and other specialized procuts (not for the mass market).