The battle of the video game consoles continues on as it has for years and most likely will for many more years to come. The current loser? Sony's Playstation 3.
No, I am not bashing the system, just speaking the truth. In sales, the PS3 is far behind Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Nintendo's Wii. This is due to only one reason: The price. I will explain my opinion in detail, but at the end I'll sum it up.
When I bought my 80GB PS3 it was $499 for the console alone. New video games are usually at least $60 each, and accessories and other items (Blu-ray DVD's, etc.) can be quite expensive as well. Add it all up and soon enough you're spending over $1000 to play a few video games and/or watch a few movies.
The price for the 80GB has now dropped to $399 in most places and is only one of several models.
Playstation 3's are built with a Blu-ray player which allows one to play games and watch movies in the highest definition available. You can watch regular DVD's too. Most models also support "backwards compatability, " which allows for one to play Playstation and Playstation 2 games. The 360 uses a DVD player, and the Wii only supports Wii and Gamecube games. A Blu-ray player alone can cost more than the entire PS3.
The PS3 also comes with a battery-powered, motion sensored wireless controller and a USB cord that connects directly into the PS3 to recharge the controller in a matter of minutes. While the Wii is on top of the motion sensored controllers, the controller uses batteries which must be replaced frequently. The 360 also doesn't use a rechargable controller, nor does it sense motion.
Given that you are connected to the internet, you automatically have access to the Playstation Network, or PSN. This allows you to connect with thousands of users across the world and play games. You can also access the fairly new Playstation Home, which is a virtual community among users. Home lets players roam the created areas and chat with other players, play games like bowling or pool, shop in a mall, and much more. There is also the Playstation Store, where you can play free demos, watch free movie trailers, purchase add ons for games you already own, and even purchase video games which download to the system's hard drive. The prices are very reasonable. In comparison, the 360 offers Xbox Live, which requires a fee just to play online. I don't know too much about the Wii's network, but I believe it is free with extra fees depending on what you do. Neither have anything similar to Playstation Home.
The PS3 has a whopping amount of hard drive storage space, and several models which offer different amounts. Most users should have no problem with needing additional storage space, though it is possible to add. The console itself is the most powerful of the systems (I won't go into detail, though) while remaining very quiet.
I've only touched on a few benefits of the PS3, but I could go on for much longer.
I should add, however, that the system is not perfect. I have had one problem in which the laser failed and required replacement. This problem occured within days after the warranty expired, so I had to pay. I also decided to fix it myself, as Sony would've charged more to repair it and I would've had to wait awhile for it to be sent and returned. If it is still covered under warranty, Sony will pay for shipping and repair it for free, or even send you a whole new PS3. You can also purchase an inexpensive extended warranty when you buy the system, which I mistakenly didn't do. As stated, problems with the PS3 are very uncommon, whereas the 360 has the common well-known Red Ring Of Death (RROD) in which the system becomes useless until repaired.
To sum things up, yes, the PS3 is expensive. But, as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. The Wii and 360 both have their own things going for them, as well. All of the consoles have advantages and disadvantages and it's a matter of what you personally desire. That being said, the Playstation 3 was what I knew I wanted, and I haven't regretted my decision yet!