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Sony to 'block PS3 Euro imports'

Written by Ben Reid @ 23 Oct 2006 14:51 User comments (61)

Sony to 'block PS3 Euro imports' European gamers anxious to get hold of the Playstation 3 console before its offical release in early '07 may be disappointed by the news that Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) has promised use the "full scope of the law" to prevent that from happening.
The eagerly anticipated console will begin retailing North America and Japan next month but is not sheduled for release in the European market until March 2007.

Last week a British judge ruled that Lik-Sang, a Taiwanese import/export firm, could not sell the Japanese version of Sony's handheld PSP gadget in Europe, setting a precedent for potential importers of PlayStation 3 console.

A spokesman for SCEE told BBC News, "The law is clear, and grey importing PS2, PSP or PS3 into the EU, without the express permission of SCEE is illegal. Therefore, we will utilise the full scope of the law to put a stop to any retailers who chose to do this."

The spokesman noted that Japanese or American PS3 models would not play older European-sold software for the first two PlayStations, would not play EU Blu-ray films or DVDs, and would not be covered by any sort of warranty. "Ultimately, we're trying to protect consumers from being sold hardware that does not conform to strict EU or UK consumer safety standards," he added.


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61 user comments

123.10.2006 16:05

So what happens when somone buys a PS3 in the U.S. and ships it to their buddy in the U.K. will the feds bust down the door and lead you away in handcuffs?

223.10.2006 16:29

I was in the Uk last Christmas & wanted to buy a game for my PSP but they will not work on a U.S machine due to the format etc. The PS 3 I would assume is no different. I guess the only way to make it work (and this is a guess) would be to have a US tv as well and then you would need to step the power down from 240v, seems like a lot of bother but then I am no big gamer.

323.10.2006 18:04

Sony is the new RIAA... Control, power, and money.

423.10.2006 18:49

it's not going to matter if your buddy dosen't send you a NTSC tv to go along with you brand spanking new ps3. if he's really cool he'll send you some games to go with the whole deal. i think it's bull that these people try to tell you what to do with the stuff you bought. what happens if some gi gets his ps3 while over seas and brings it back with him, he is screwed if he dosen't bring a tv with him; and a transformer with him.....i remember back in the day that's all my parents needed to use the vcr they bought in germany here in the states. and the atari 2600. oh thoese were the days.

523.10.2006 20:20

lol whyd your parents buy a VCR in germany?

623.10.2006 21:01

So "region free" is a term a lot more specific than I previously thought.

723.10.2006 22:21

Doesn't the Sharp Aquos support/display PAL, NTSC, and SECAM or is that just through the analog? If it would work through component or HDMI, then someone could buy one of those for the PS3. Either way, this should not matter to Sony. Maybe somone in Europe has a US or Japanese TV. What if somone bought a TV and moved to Europe with it?? It is possible. Even so, what do you need if you don't have a US TV?? A converter which is probably $100 and a power adapter which is $5 or you can change the power supply on the PS3. You still save more money since the PS3 is cheaper in the US & Japan than in Europe, especially the UK. Then you just get US or Japanese games and BD titles. Everything is about 3/5 the price, so you save mega $$$$ in the long run. And shipping, that is neglegable. VAT is 19% in Europe. Just buy on eBay and the shipping is cancelled by the VAT.

823.10.2006 22:58

So what happens when somone buys a PS3 in the U.S. and ships it to their buddy in the U.K. will the feds bust down the door and lead you away in handcuffs?
nah man it won't make it thru the mail... after it gets processed they would see what it is and either keep your ps3 or send it back to the return address with a warning... and no sony is not the new RIAA... but they don't want the ps3 to be in an un supported region.. and the electrical differences might cause a fire and stuff like that... better off to just wait...

924.10.2006 0:52

Personally I could'nt care about playing any EU Blu Ray films. My TV (like most TV's sold now) can handle a NTSC Picture. I already have a step down convertor. Why should sony care if like 10% get shipped into this country? 1. Sony europe lose money (boo hoo like they aint got enough) 2. They cant claim the vat back (17.5%)in 2007's tax year (hence why its being launched in march). And finally 3. They dont want us to know its cheaper to have one imported from the U.S.A because they lose out on 1 & 2....

1024.10.2006 1:48

Pal/NTSC dosent matter anymore 50$ and less converters are everywhere and thats 25 euro and less to boot sont is jsut protecting its arse when it should ahve jsut delayed the release more and took all the region chains off the PS3 ..... ------ PSP is handheld and thus region free right? well the PSP movies are not but games are. ---------------- anyway What sony is doing is covering their ass the PS3 is not fully un region'd movies are by region so if you import a system from japan or the US you are srewed because sony is protecting its euro BR releases and not the consumers. Yet again they just have handicapped them selfs not only is the Non region not fully un-region'd they want to stop importers from importing because they don't have exclusive deals with Sony..they don't want to lose "sales" of reginged movies ,they also are trying to limit the number of sales world wide since they are having production issues....its all a game by to protect tis regions of sale for Console and movie,and to think you almost made this console pointless to chip.....try again...

1124.10.2006 1:51

Well, if all this is right, i won't be selling 1, but 2 PS3's online when i get them. Sony can kiss my @ss as far as i'm concerned, they want to put European gamers off and wait 'till march to release that thing here, then i feel i won't be buying a PS3 here for a while, and sell both my imported PS3's. Another reason not to be overtly happy with this next gen system... And to think i felt let down by the 360.. The PS3 is quickly going down that same path as far as i'm concerned.

1224.10.2006 2:16

The_Fiend Already down that path WTF are you talking about they already passed where MS and the 360 was,when they put HDMI back on the low end they managed to climb a bit higher than the limping 360 but at the rate Sony sits and has a drink self congratulating itself the 360 will had HD games and be nearly equal to the PS3 in ability,sony is the bi polar egomanic Hare and MS is the slow and broken Turtle both are messed up but sonys psychophrenic arrogance is making me fcking hate them.

1324.10.2006 2:26

For your $600 you get free GPS, biometric, and retnal scanning so sony can track your every fucking move and action.... Besides the power differences.... why in the hell are we making different regioned shit? I dont remember my VHS telling me that I couldnt watch Roger Rabbit because it was from Japan.... I feel the corporate fist closing tighter around my neck...

1424.10.2006 2:31

Zippy84 It started as simple diffrent standarded the PAL format is has higher fps and MHZ than a NTSC ,but coprerate greed has kind fcked with all that making regioning soemthign they can do to screw with the little guy. 30% hardware 70% Corporate greed and protection converters of all type are so easy to get its a moot point.

1524.10.2006 4:28

How will Sony stop sales on Ebay??

1624.10.2006 4:36

Shado36 they can't on the other hand they can force sellers to not sell t europe. basically this move is to stifle import business's and try and effect over all PS3 imports in a vain attempt to cut back without cutting back sales.

1724.10.2006 5:04

<i>"A spokesman for SCEE told BBC News, "The law is clear, and grey importing PS2, PSP or PS3 into the EU, without the express permission of SCEE is illegal."</i> Uh, no its not, and the law is sure as hell not "clear." Just because you want it to be illegal and say it is illegal, it doesn't mean it is. Based on what legislation?

1824.10.2006 5:43

Sony is not interested in protecting consumers - They are only interested in themselves. Just look at the way they are handling the two class actions over faulty PS2 DVD drives, damages caused by Rootkit and reluctance to meet court ordered compensation in all countries fairly. They would not even fess up to the latest battery debacle until the courts forced them to act. Sony is a thing of the past, the current problems are just the stench of a dying animal. Sony is only interested in ripping European & Australian consumers off by over charging for PAL software. We all know this. I am very much motivated by Sony's actions to buy a modded PS2 and a good DVD burner! Not that I like PS2 - It is just that it has become good sport to attack this pest of a company. People who hack Sony, burn Sony, and in any way damage Sony are held in high esteem - Look at the PSP hackers thety are treated like hero's. Have fun at Sony's expense - its what all good citizens should do. Don't pay for Sony - It's better if it's a Phony.

1924.10.2006 5:47

Gazbin OMG good one "Don't pay for Sony - It's better if it's a Phony."

2024.10.2006 6:02

"The law is clear, and grey importing PS2, PSP or PS3 into the EU, without the express permission of SCEE is illegal. Therefore, we will utilise the full scope of the law to put a stop to any RETAILERS who chose to do this." After reading this I believe that Sony are not trying to stop individuals from importing PS3. Notice in the quote it clearly states RETAILERS. They mention Lik Sang in the article too. There is no way they can stop me from buying overseas. As for the NTSC/PAL issue, there isn't one. My TV is a UK PAL TV but it handles NTSC no problem as do most TV's these days and convertors are next to nothing to buy. The same goes for the power supply, a convertor is as cheap as chips.

2124.10.2006 6:05

It is better to have a Phony. I have no sympathy for this company - they brought this down on themselves.

2224.10.2006 6:37

gamelover all they can do is stop retailers a bit.

2324.10.2006 7:21

well dosnt that just stop even the eoupeins from using ebay to find one because thats where anyone in the us will put it with the shortage of units being released to drive the price up I say damn them all and lets create a unit that plays online anywhere in the world as long as you have wifi and pay for the games by buying gamecards see it would be easyer for all to buy this unit from the web with no country to rule it everyone could play what they want and since the games would be online only then this elimanates the region codes for where it can be played .. see we are all still stuck upgrading and then buying more games while some one gets richer everyday but not us the working class .. see the world should be manufacturing things for the "working class" not just the rich and then we get it next year when the price falls in to our income range.... just a rant sorry....

2424.10.2006 7:24

That's what I figure Zippy, there is no law that states you can not import Sony products, nor is there any law stating you cannot import any other electrical goods. So long as you import it correctly and legally filling in all the right paperwork and paying import duty, taxes etc I fail to see how they can do anything about it.

2524.10.2006 7:30

gamelover I am not in europe so I am not 100% sure but I think corpertions have a bit more say as to how retail import business import their products. I am not sure tho. anyone with European import knowledge want to weigh in here?

2624.10.2006 9:44

with link sang being shut down for the time being if not permnatly damaged I am trying to see if this is enws worthy enough to run on while not politics per say this have nasty ramifications if Sony gets it's ways are frighting image 2 years down the line where import bans prevent you from not only importing hardware players but the media itself....

2724.10.2006 10:29

there also leads to the idea that by their behavour Sony is pupetuating piracy .... buy making only limited amonts of units to be made and sold at anygiven time arnt they controling the cost... now add the availiblity of games and then you are at their mersay sad but true .if imports of games from anywhere other then the us were limited then it would have even greater ramifacations on sale in the futer or is this the p3 sony's last hurra because pissing off the people who buy them makes no marketable sence...

2824.10.2006 10:37

mystic Mmm in order to perpetuate it you have to do it on a large scale or let it be down on a large scale. What sony is dooign is what MS did screwing up big time altho MS is noting trying to protect its screw ups by baning the importation of its console... PS3 production delays > Sony adds up the cost of lost sales > bans the the import of of PS3 to Europe to protect its console and movie business their... Sony fails to see some want the jap release with the extra jap only stuff sony fails to see some like to just get the jap stuff becuse they can read japanse,then theres thos that hate the euro game market and import everything from the US sony fails to see if could eaily make more jap/us systems to make up from the importation sony just fials to see past its own arrgont self....

2924.10.2006 19:34

i spammed.

i'm now immortalised here -

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 24 Oct 2006 @ 22:38

3024.10.2006 20:23

they can prevent you from sellings a NTSC/US/J ps3 on e bay thats nothing... and customs won't let it in either... for alot of you guys who think it will be easy... well think again it won't... and if you do happen to get it imported... that means you will have to get all your games and movies imported... its not that you can't watch it... of course theres converters... but is there converters for HDMI? unless you don't want the full pontential of your console... if ps3 was only in PAL.. i would not get it shiped here (US).. i don't want to bother with converters and always importing games/movies... because you can pay more due to the shipping... why pay extra? 60 bucks a game and then 5.99 to import it... yea just wait... also its not going to come cheap.. unless you know someone here willing to sell you a ps3 for the same price they bought it and then try to get it through customs... they are not just targeting retailers... thats just what this one article says... that doesn't mean its 100% correct... they can target anybody trying to import sony products... also just like the RIAA blocked out people trying to sell pre loaded ipods from auction sites...

3125.10.2006 0:29

wow sony's new slogun we dont just rip off consumers we rip off countrys and sony cannot stop exporting ps3's unless of course they own ebay or buy and sell options in chat rooms like ps3crazy and others worse the nintendo wii is fully backwards compatible with us and all other countrys so this just turns me off on buying a ps3 you should be able to use the console as you see fit you should beable to use any country dvd game or other in the console this is why nintendo wii is going to win because the price tag is cheap cheap cheap cheap where sonys price tag is rip off rip off rip off and just wait untill your ps3 controller stops charging it will then cost you 59.99 to replace a controller and worse there are no removable rechagable batterys in the consoles controllers so ha ha ha ha to one and all if you buy a ps3 here is there new slogon sony of america we want you to by everything so we can rip you off on controllers and dvds later

3225.10.2006 2:13

sony (europe) have even got sanctions against the hong kong firms that were selling all the psps to the uk aswel so they cant do the same with the ps3

3325.10.2006 5:03

about 5 years ago I read an articail about the levels of technology that was being alowed to be sold outside of the us one of the items that caught my eye was that the us government wouldnt alow microsoft to sell their software out to countrys that they (us) didnt get along with does that hold true to the items being shipped to eourpe? if they are based out of japan how can the us involve itself in distrobution from a seperat nation Japan always has beter games as well as add ons for any platform ... why can everyone buy what they want....? from korea we get some of the best mp4 players or as most know them "PMP"'s but in the us we cant buy them because the government says no so whos running the show ,maybe its the internet senitor who beleive that email flows through tubes.......

3425.10.2006 5:35

No need to worry a chip will be out soon also someone could ship the console to mexico then to switzerland two free countries or if someone's connected well enough he'll be able to sneak through the airport (from mexico of course)

3525.10.2006 6:16

well if you do import it good for you caus the games, and $ony have said it themselves, WILL be multireigon, so you can play japan/amrica games here. w00t.

3625.10.2006 12:44

REAM no you can't... its not multi regional.

3725.10.2006 14:04

well you keep on beliving that, btu the games are multi rigonal. even official ps2 magazine said it.

3825.10.2006 16:33

FACT PS3 games are cross region JAP/EURO/USA //only// currently.
By doing it like this sony can prevent the importation of games outside of the 3 main regions

UNKNOW PSX-PS2 games regioned.

FACT Sony is stopping imports of PS3 and PSP on he grounds that that USA and other region power adapters do not meet EU electronic standards.

UNKNOW on what IMPORT LAW Sony claiming to be broken.

FACT BR and DVD movies on the PS3 are regioned.
Euro=Euro ONLY

the free multi region dream of gameing has fallen on its face and is now limping,its up to sony to turn it into the walking dead or actually do good for the consumers.

Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

Check out my crappy creations

3926.10.2006 17:27

sonys getting ridiculous now i acually give up with getting a ps3 there trying everythink they can to stop piracy , immporting ps3 consoles and even you cant own the game anymore you can only rent it sony has the right to take it back off you. after all iv read now i refuse to get a ps3 im sticking with xbox 360 and i reacon playstatin will go bust sooner or later due to there stupid laws. whats wrong with us importing a ps3 sony arnt loosing any money so why should they care?

4026.10.2006 17:54

Been gone for a while. it's nice to see so many good thoughts on the subject. and to thoese of you who read my last post... it was the early 80's. the coolest and only video game row in the entire store was for the atari 2600. and we bought a vcr because other then the afn there was no english tv. and sony probaly have shot themselves int the foot. i'll most likely catch hell for this but what the hell, i'm going to wait for the chance to get myself a wii. i know that nintendo isn't the gratest but i have been waiting for the twilight princess to come out for a long time.

“Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out. Forget this... and attaining enlightenment is the least of your problems.”
–Zen Judaism by Someone Clever

4126.10.2006 22:34

because they want to precisely control their loss's,and at the same time setup a corporate reign on global and regional distribution.........

Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

Check out my crappy creations

4228.10.2006 13:21

It's a @#*$^%(*&# GAME CONSOLE ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Get a life, play the games you bought last year, and don't @#%^&^ worry about "the NEWWWWWWEST game on the market!" If you're THAT desperate, move out of Europe.

4328.10.2006 15:43

Steve83 so your saying should limit what hardware and media we buy because tis not from "our" region?

4429.10.2006 0:44

This would make for an interesting court case....Sony may have the right to delay/order retailers to hold back on the release of the ever they have no right in stopping consumers(tourists) from purchasing a unit if they happen to be in the USA or Japan,the only way they can put a stop to that is buying out the relevant countries import/export laws,now if i know the ACCC(i'm from oz land :) i can't see them letting that happen with out a big fight,us ozzies won the right to be able TO have the right to circumvent our PS2's,as Sony was taking to long in releasing games, in line with the rest of the world,we were law...the power to import games...hence the "***chip",and also that no-one has the right to stop any consumer from purchasing their items from where ever they choose from in the world.... So to stop importations of their units they will have to buy out or take the worlds governtments to court as well...interesting huh? my personal feelings on sony...well now they can stick their PS3 where the sun don't shine,i was looking forward to the worldwide release of NOV 06,then all their rubbish about this and that,they can keep their PS3's

4529.10.2006 1:01

samuels *L* you lucky ozzies can you circumvent the import bans on games by downloading them to? :3 *L*

4629.10.2006 2:23

*LOL*....only if you can....i think they changed the ruling on that one when we started open trading with the USA..that was part of the package deal *L*

4729.10.2006 2:26

samuels a shame sicne the bans make little to no since,I guess liek downloading anything else the changes of gettign fined are lower than losing a 50$ game you imported 0-o any word on any changes to your game rating system?

4829.10.2006 9:45

@ ZIppyDSM there was talk of a change to the "R" rating....but thats all at the moment,just talk.when i bought the xbox 360 a few months ago(well about a month after release) is when i heard about it,they have now realised that many of(majority) of games are aimed at the older generation,i have 2 kids and they love to play the 360 and the only game to date that comes close to their age group is Kameo,otherwise they have to play an xbox 360 compatible kids xbox game like the simpsons hit and run and a couple of the cortex games...

4929.10.2006 12:37

samuels fuuun. they baned dead raising right?

5029.10.2006 13:49

@ ZIppyDSM not that i am aware of

5129.10.2006 13:56

samuels mabye they figured out that games are not jsut for kids 0-o

5229.10.2006 18:43

:) not the sort of game i'd let my kids play......they maybe 3 and 4 YO's but they know how to play games....:) down here it has a MA15+(restricted) rating

5329.10.2006 23:13

samuels well the point is to hope they will just age rate all games and let them "into" the country. *L* need to get a PS2 or a WII thos 2 have a ton of kid games *L*

5431.10.2006 22:19

:) already have...but for some reason they like xbox and xbox 360..why i don't know *L* any hows Sony have done their dash with me PS3 on the backburner for me for a loooooonnnng time :)

551.11.2006 19:52

Not so much hard news as insight on how sony T.K.O'd link sang so fast

569.11.2006 5:59

:@ Shocked and unhappy
if they bad imports on ps3 they have destroyed my plan of getting a ps3 b 4 all my mates :(

5710.11.2006 11:41

Originally posted by Leema01:
:@ Shocked and unhappy
if they bad imports on ps3 they have destroyed my plan of getting a ps3 b 4 all my mates :(
at this stage there seems to be no bans in place for oz land..i notice a certain place is still advertising pre-orders for the PS3 from both the USA AND Japan...only thing is you won't get it on NOV17...probably 1-2 weeks after.....which is still good for importers they still get it long before PAL release date...

5810.11.2006 12:15

you can sill get it off ebay and any udder the radar importer.

Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

Check out my crappy creations

597.12.2006 6:14

so has anyone imported one yet like they claimed?

607.12.2006 7:59

if it does work you could probaly order them off play asia if you sent them an email asking them personally :P

6114.12.2006 19:14

American PS3's can play Japanese PS3 games, and Blue-ray and DVD's, right????

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