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The PlayStation video game console celebrated its 20th anniversary on December 3, 2014. To celebrate, Sony produced 12,300 20th-anniversary edition PS4 consoles, which is their latest gaming device, featuring a classic grey design mirroring the original PlayStation.
A PlayStation 4 Anniversary edition, which retails for $499.99 (USD), beside a PlayStation, which was released in Japan in 1994 and in North America in 1995. Photo courtesy: Sony
Each 20th-anniversary console was given a serial number and during a recent charity auction, unit “00001”, which was sold by Sony Computer Entertainment Japan on Yahoo Auctions, one lucky person in Japan took it home… for $129,000 (USD). Starting at ¥1 on Friday and after 1,585 bids, the final bid closed as ¥15.135 million.
“We appreciate all who participated in the auction and are surprised at the highest bid price, which was higher than our expectations,” a Sony representative told the Wall Street Journal.
In 1988, the PlayStation began its life as a collaboration between Sony and Nintendo to create a CD-ROM drive for the Super Famicom or the Nintendo Entertainment System as it was known in North America.
After a series of disputes with Nintendo, Ken Kutaragi, who was a hardware developer with Sony, took on the development of the PlayStation. However, it was under some duress that he worked on the project as video games were seen as a mere fad.
After years of work, the console was released in 1994 and is noted as the first video game console to ship 100 million units.
In 2000, the PlayStation 2 was released and became the fastest video game console to reach that sweet number of 100 million units shipped. It is the best-selling console in history with over 155 million units shipped while Microsoft’s Xbox lagged behind with just 24 million units shipped and Nintendo’s GameCube with 22 million shipped worldwide.
In 2006, the PS3 was released, but with a new focus that would put the video console at the centre of your living room. “PS3™ provides an even more incredible value, functioning as the true “entertainment hub” for the living room and the “must-have” console for gamers,” the console’s description reads. With a Blu-Ray player, Wi-Fi Internet Browser, and a large library of games it quickly became another best seller, but was beaten by the Xbox 360 in worldwide sales.
The PS4 has sold 18.5 million units since it was released in North America and Europe in November 2013, and in Japan in February 2014.