TOKYO, Aug 25 – Sony Group Corp said on Thursday it was raising the price of its PlayStation 5 video game console in markets including Europe, Japan and the United Kingdom following economic pressures, including higher interest rates. interest.

Sony said it will raise the price of the disc drive-equipped version of the console to 549.99 euros ($550.81) from 499.99 euros previously in Europe, with a similar increase in Japan.

The Japanese entertainment conglomerate said there would be no price increase in the United States, where it is locked in a battle with Microsoft Corp’s Xbox, which is aggressively expanding its game subscription service.

“We are seeing high rates of global inflation, as well as adverse currency trends, affect consumers and create pressure across many industries,” Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) CEO Jim Ryan wrote in a blog post.

The price hike comes at a time when Sony’s gaming business has been hit by supply chain problems that have led to hardware shortages. The conglomerate intends to ramp up PS5 production for the year-end shopping season.

While the price hike “is a necessity given the current global economic climate and its impact on SIE’s business, improving the PS5 supply situation remains our top priority,” gaming chief Ryan wrote.

Sony aims to sell 18 million units of the blockbuster device this year, after selling 11.5 million units in the year ended March.

“While the PS5 price increases are broad, they are relatively nuanced and taking place in the markets where the impact is being felt the most, with an added layer of pressure coming from the strong US dollar,” the Ampere analyst wrote. Analysis, Piers Harding-Rolls, in a blog.

“Microsoft will take advantage of Sony’s rise to push its ‘value’ message,” added Harding-Rolls.

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