Update: PSU is reporting that GameStop has officially said they will no longer be receiving shipments of the 80GB PS3. However, after contacting several stores ourselves, we still can't say this is an absolute fact, because only one admitted they had "heard something about it" and the other two said "as far as they know," they'll still be getting the 80GB model. Well, chances are, they just haven't gotten the company-wide e-mail just yet… We're still waiting for the announcement from Sony, too.
Sony has yet to issue an official announcement regarding the seemingly inevitable fate of the 80GB PS3, but it seems Best Buy and other retailers are already prepared to drop it from their inventory. The latest inside word comes from GameStop, and it appears the 80GB model really is on the way out.
According to a QJ.net and GameStop manager, Kaizer_911, the company won't be restocking the 80GB PS3 anymore. Another source claims they haven't received any 80GB shipments since late November (and 40GB shipments remain consistent), so maybe it's not surprising to see these comments from Kaizer:
"I went ahead and looked in our Back Office Inventory screen and found that the only SKU listed as Active for the PS3 consoles (new ones that is) was the 40GB. The 20, 60, AND 80 GB SKUs were listed as Deleted."
He insists the inventory status reflects the status of the entire company and not just one store or set of stores, which means we won't be seeing the 80GB PS3 at GameStop locations for much longer. Again, none of this is official – Sony plans to reply to these 80GB discontinuation rumors "soon" at the PlayStation blog – but the evidence is starting to pile up. At this point, it almost seems as if the announcement is unnecessary…the cat is kinda out of the bag, Sony.