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Since Launch: Why is it so hard to get the PS5?

2020 has been a year that many can’t wait to see the back of. With 2021 promising so much, including various restocks of the latest consoles, games and devices, there is no wonder we’re so eager for this year to end.

Some might make the point that the latest PS5 console was released over a month ago so why is a restock so important? Well, any gamer knows how difficult it is to get your hands on one of the coveted PS5 consoles currently. You’d think by now that major companies such as Sony and Microsoft would have figured out how to run a successful launch online but in the last few weeks we’ve seen many struggling to place orders, get on the waiting list or even find a retailer that stocks the PS5 console.

This Christmas is one of the most important and biggest launch seasons we’ve seen for years and for some reason companies are failing to keep up with pre-orders, let alone the in-store sales. We’ve done some investigating into why these companies are finding it so difficult to exchange the consumers money for product and how you can avoid all of the stress yourself and grab a PS5 in the rush.

One thing that we very quickly discovered in that these companies do not make it very clear how many will be available, when they’ll be available or even where they will be available. As of this moment, all sites are saying that the console is “sold out” with no indication of when the restock will take place in the new year. So if you don’t have a confirmation email in your inbox telling you that you have pre-ordered your PS5 and that it will be on its way shortly, you’re probably not going to see one until mid-2021.

Sony failed to let the consumers know when the pre-orders would go live, already creating a problem and when the pages went live things only got worse. With errors, glitches and meltdowns, the launch of the PS5 was a disaster. When it came time to order the console, many were horrified to witness items go missing from their ‘shopping carts’ online moments before the console was listed “out of stock”. This has been a common occurrence across multiple companies, such as Xbox and Microsoft who have also dealt with launches this year.

One of the main reason Sony gave for the pile-up was that their website had received 10 times the amount of traffic they had received in the previous year, causing the site to crash and malfunction. This only proceeded to intensify when Sony announced they would also be having a Black Friday sale.

Sony have apologised for all of the miscommunication and trouble they have caused and claim to be making more PS5’s available for pre-order before the end of the year with another restock coming in the new year, but we’re not hopeful that things will run any smoother than in November.

Another reason why the websites have been unreliable across most retailers, is that they are currently more focused on selling as many units in store as possible. As a result, there isn’t much incentive for the companies to fix the websites or organise some of the chaos involved in the digital queuing process.

Unfortunately due to the intense culture of corporate secrecy we see in the gaming world, no one actually knows what is happening and there is no way of finding out. This is yet another marketing strategy for Sony. By making the consumer believe that there is a limited quantity of the product, the demand will sky-rocket. By letting the consumer know that this product will be harder to come by in future months, it only increases the incentive for anyone wishing to own a PS5. With very little stock available, Sony has no pressure to sell the stock sitting on shelves as it is guaranteed that it will go. To big investors, consumers and analysts, this indicates that the launch has been successful rewarding Sony with a positive development.

Besides the miscommunication and misaligned incentives, COVID-19 has caused its own road-blocks for the whole process. With manufacturers and distributers struggling, it comes as no surprise that the company is struggling to keep up with the demand.

We can’t say that 2021 looks any more promising for anyone wanting to buy a PS5 but we can offer some tip and tricks to getting first in-line when the restock does eventually happen.

The first step should be to find a reliable and trusted retailer that you know you van trust. Enter your details, create a profile and have your bank details already set up in preparation for the restock. This will hopefully give you a head start.

A little trick we’ve discovered is looking at various phone contracts that offer the PS5 as part of the deal. The company that you choose will have to provide you with both devices as it is now part of the contract, taking all the hard work off your shoulders.

The simplest and most effective tip is to leave a PS5 in your shopping cart online. This will help you avoid any crashing websites as you won’t have to search the site for the product when the time comes around.

So congratulations if you managed to bag yourself a PS5! You’re one of the few lucky ones. If you are one of the unlucky ones who fell victim to one of the incidents we listed above, hopefully 2021 brings you nothing but a simple pre-ordering process with a brand new PS5 to follow.

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