The new version of the classic console will be "slimmer, sleeker and more suave in its looks," according to an article in the Economic Times. Sony has also done away with the external AC adapter, opting instead for a built-in unit. Sony Computer Entertainment Country Manager Atindriya Bose said Sony wants to make major inroads into the largely untapped BRIC (Brazil-Russia-India-China) markets and feels the PlayStation 2 will be more effective in that capacity that the newer, more expensive PlayStation 3.
"PS2 is an entry-level console, which helps first timers to enter the gaming zone," Bose said. "We feel the PS2 has the potential to penetrate further into the Indian and Russian markets. Console gaming is in its nascent stage in India. These are untapped markets and are new to the gaming world, hence we have no plans to phase out PS2 anytime soon."
The PlayStation 2 has shipped over 120 million units worldwide since its launch in 2000, but only 3.4 million have been sold in India despite its population of over 1.1 billion people. The latest generation of the console is expected to come to market by Diwali on October 28, and will retail for the same price as the previous hardware, about $160.
"We do not market it as a PS2 or PS3," Bose added, explaining the company's PlayStation 3 strategy in emerging markets. "It is the experience of the PS that we market. PS3 is for the next generation. People who are first-timers in the gaming market want to pick up PS2 and experience that, before upgrading to PS3."
For gamers in India who have already made that upgrade, Sony Computer Entertainment India said it will also be launching the PlayStation Network in the country by the end of this fiscal year. "The PlayStation Network is ready for India," Bose said. "It is only the integration of the payment gateway that needs to be done."