Cheap and cheerful may be the theme for holiday shopping this year, with consumers looking for low-priced technology that can raise their spirits with its entertainment value.
Nintendo's $250 Wii and Microsoft's Xbox 360 Arcade console are cases in point. Since the basic version of the Xbox 360 console was dropped to $199.99 in September, making it the cheapest of the next-generation ones, sales seem to have soared.
Sony would argue that its $399 PS3 represents better value given its bigger hard disk, built-in wi-fi and a Blu-ray drive. However, Sony offering its Blu-ray players for as low as $150 in the past week has weakened its case somewhat.