Sony has confirmed that Playstation 3 will hit Europe on March 23, with 1 million units to be available across SCEE territories from launch day.
As expected, the PS3 will retail for GBP 425 in the UK and EUR 599 elsewhere - except Ireland, where it will cost EUR 629.99.
Only the 60GB model will be available at launch with the 20GB version "to follow later in the year dependent on demand", according to Sony. The decision not to offer the 20GB PS3 at launch was described by the platform holder as a response to "retail and consumer demand".
An official statement says that 1 million units will be available "during the initial launch period" - but speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, a spokesperson clarified that the 1 million figure is the target for day one.
In comparison, 325 nintendo Wii consoles were available in Europe at launch, while microsoft has suggested that the estimated figure for Xbox 360 of 300,000 units is in the right ball park. As a result, if Sony hits the 1 million target, it will have more consoles available on day one than both of its rivals put together.
Sony has yet to reveal any details of how the shipment will be divided up between territories. However, Britain generally accounts for between 25 and 30 per cent of the European games market, which would suggest that the launch day figure for the UK could stand at around 300,000 units.