The PS3 was released in Japan and North America on November 2006 while Europe, the Middle East, Australia, Africa and New Zealand got it a little later on March 2007. China, however, has never gotten access to the Playstation due to a console games ban that has been active since the early 2000s.
In July, Chinese authorities granted the PS3 a “China Compulsory Certificate.” As reported by Techinasia, China has already approved the console, now it’s all up to Sony to actually launch it there. Consoles can be sold as long as they are labeled as home entertainment devices. The PS3 has Blu-Ray capabilities, a music player as well as a range of online services.
Despite having a thriving videogame industry that includes production, sale, import, and export of videogames, China has never gotten their hands on an Xbox 360, the Wii or a PS3. Nintendo, however, has been selling other hardware under the brand iQue which only releases portable Nintendo games. The Nintendo 3DS XL will be launched in China under the name iQue 3DS XL on December 2012. Last month, Chinese manufacturing titan Foxconn was reported to have used underage teenagers to manufacture the Wii U.
The government implemented the console ban in 2000 to prevent the nation’s youth from wasting their time playing videogames. However, gamers are still allowed to buy videogames provided they are not for consoles. Online gaming, on the other hand, is a thriving business in China with currently 457 million internet users, two-thirds of which are active online gamers. Interestingly enough, last year, Chinese prisoners were reported to have been forced to play World of Warcraft so that the prison guards can trade their items for real money.