II am aiming to post this info everywhere I can so others don't go thru the same crap I did today. It could only be a matter of time before this kind of scam turns up on Ebay for unsuspecting buyers.
I'm from the UK and in Singapore on holiday and looking for a cheap PS3 console. Went to Funan, Mustafa, Sony shops in Isetan, Best Denki, Harvey Norman - no PS3 in stock anywhere. Only place I could find it was Sim Lim Square at prices too good to be true - surprise surprise - they WERE too good to be true.
The guys in Sim Lim Square are pure SCAM artists! Especially Harris at GAMES INNOVATION on the Ground Floor.
He said I could buy a PS3 for 399 SGD (about £160) and it was in stock. When we proceeded to talk he asked where I was from and when I said UK he said this PS3 was region-coded to Asia. I was fairly sure games were region free but Blu-Ray discs weren't but he said this was new in Asia and they had started region-coding the PS3 models and games to get around people buying them cheap and taking them out of Asia. Stupidly I fell for this and bought a "region-free model" from him for 560SGD (which happened to be the same price Sony Style shop quoted, I should have realised what was happening at this point). I wanted the White model so I paid a bit extra for that over the black one. I also bought a controller from him and he was trying to sell me other crap and not giving me any discounts or haggling at all. I got him to take it out of the box and test it all and it worked fine. Problem was I didn't have a UK game to test it with so who knew if it was really region-free or not? Got back to hotel and did more research on this and found on a forum that a guy in HK had exactly same kind of problem. I was so angry so I went all the way back and demanded a refund or difference in price and said this was not region free and that was just a story he made up to get customers to pay a lot more. He refused to refund me. Thankfully I had paid by credit card (for which they charged me 4 percent extra) but I threatened to cancel the card payment if he didn't refund me. Eventually after a lot of arguing I got a full refund. I then asked at a few other shops in Sim Lim Square and a lot of do the same trick. I eventually bought a black PS3 from another shop there for 450 SGD then he said GST was not included so I paid an extra 7 percent. Then I was told I had to buy two games (at vastly inflated prices even compared to the UK) and then he was still trying to convince me to take a region-free model even though no such thing exists as such! Thankfully even after paying over the odds for all of it I still came out 55 UK pounds better but with no warranty (only SIngapore warranty). The second shop also refused to even let me test the console in the shop although he agreed he would replace it if I brought it back the same day.
Be warned - don't fall for the sim lim scam artists, don't believe anything to do with region coding, be careful what you pay for anything and use a credit card! It's worth the peace of mind! I hope this helps out some people.
PS3 Purchasing in Singapore - SCAMS!
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12 March 2008
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