Black Friday is here, which means mega markdowns on everything from TVs to toasters, and headphones to holidays. But there’s one product you won’t see with a knockdown price – yep, Sony’s PlayStation 5.
The Japanese giant’s next-gen console has been in short supply since launching over a year ago, to the point that simply getting hold of PS5 stock at the full retail price is a Black Friday ‘deal’ in itself.
The good news? Hope is on the horizon. Major retailers such as Amazon and Walmart are promising to let rip with some of the best PS5 deals yet now that it’s Black Friday, with consoles, bundles, games and accessories all up for grabs. But what’s the secret to scoring a PS5 during the Black Friday restocks? And why is PS5 stock in such short supply?
US PS5 quick links
UK PS5 quick links
There’s little doubt that global chip shortages, shipping delays and bots (which snap-up any stock) have made it a struggle for the average gamer to buy a PS5 console this year. There’s even a conspiracy theory that Sony deliberately squeezes supply to give the PS5 an aura of ‘exclusivity’. Hmmm. But perhaps the biggest real culprit is COVID-19.
With half the world plunged into lockdown, and millions asked to work from home, demand for all games consoles – and especially Sony’s first new PlayStation for seven years – sky-rocketed. When the first wave of PS5 stock was released on 12th November 2020, it sold out within days. As did the next batch, and the next, and the next… As the ongoing pandemic stretched Sony’s manufacturing and supply capacity to breaking point, more and more gamers were left PS5-less.
In May 2021, Sony privately warned analysts that PlayStation 5 shortages would continue until 2022: “I don’t think demand is calming down this year and even if we secure a lot more devices and produce many more units of the PlayStation 5 next year, our supply wouldn’t be able to catch up with demand,” said a gloomy Hiroki Totoki, the company’s Chief Financial Officer.
And just a few weeks ago, Sony Interactive Entertainment boss Jim Ryan addressed “historic demand” for the PS5, and admitted that “inventory constraints remain a source of frustration for our customers”.
He also assured customers that Sony is “laser-focussed” on shipping as many console units as possible, but, truth is, the company expects to produce one million fewer consoles – 15 million, rather than 16 million – in the financial year ending March 2022.
In short, getting hold of a PS5 isn’t getting any easier. But that’s not to say it can’t be done. You’ll need to keep an eye on social media (@PS5StockAlert is one of the most reliable places to find PS5 stock tips). Combine good intel with the secrets below, and you should be able to scoop Sony’s 4K console in the Black Friday sales.
1. Sign up and sign in
Open a free account with all the major PS5 retailers (Amazon, Argos, Walmart, Best Buy, Box, Smyths Toys, PlayStation Direct, Game, GameStop, etc) and sign in before PS5 stock drops. This will make for a faster checkout process – otherwise you can lose your console before you checkout.
2. Fill your…