Warning: the following post is not an attempt at advertising the forum linked. It's just another source of information about Sony's PS3 failures. If you think otherwise, click here.
A forum i frequent has a long running thread about blu-ray drives dying out. Living in a country (India) where it's relatively cheaper to buy a gray import PS3 has its perks, such as small service centers the size of 4x4 foot rooms where tech gods resurrect PS3s, Wiis and 360s with equal ease.
And according to them, the problem is indeed the blu-ray drive, which doesn't cost more than $50 to replace (provided you can track down a spare and solder it yourself) or willing to plop down $100 to get it done by them.
Or if you actually own an official PS3 (yes it launched here, for real) then you'd be subjected to waiting for a replacement and around $ 100 check. The money is because in case your issue is with a 60GB PS3 (to which most of these problems, dubbed "Spin of Death" have occurred) Sony India would reimburse you the $100 difference along with a 40GB PS3. They don't repair consoles and in some instances they've even asked people if they've modded their PS3s to play pirated games.
As you can see Sony (at least Sony India) knows jackshit and are too busy drooling over the fact that their PS3 stock sold out pretty quick. Seems that while the rest of the world is subject to a more humbler Sony, we in India are stuck with a vintage 2005 Sony Kaz Hirai Arrogance&Ignorance Edition.
For the paranoid, PS3 haters or Xbots needing more ammo, this is a thread worth looking into if you think it's something to be bothered about, while the rest of us continue playing Gran Turismo or whatever is Sony's black box has to offer. If you're one of the unlucky few who're facing this situation (which has so far only hit 60/80GB owners), this is on me.