At this point in time there is only one backwards compatible version of the PS3, the 80 GB PS3, which is only available in North America. There are indications, however, that it might also be retired by Sony. It is clear that backwards compatibility is not very high on the list of Sony’s priorities but it might still give software simulation a try.
Eric Lempel, director of Playstation Network, told EGM magazine (latest issue) in an interview that backwards compatibility might stage a comeback on the PS3. He said that there were possibilities, through technology and software emulation, of PS2 titles appearing as Playstation Network downloads, though they hadn’t discussed it.
Though Lempel’s comments might elicit a bit of excitement among gamers who treasure backwards compatibility, PS2 titles’ availability as PSN downloads will still leave their PS2 discs unusable with the PS3. Imagine paying for downloading the same title you already own. (Oh wait, that is already happening with the Wii and Xbox Live). Even so, Sony would ensure some extra gamer loyalty if it continued to offer complete backwards compatibility.