European consumers can now sign up to purchase a PS5, directly from Sony.
The PlayStation Direct store, which has already been running in the US since 2020 and launched in the UK in November 2021, is rolling out an initiative in certain European territories that lets users register their interest in purchasing a “limited amount” of PS5 consoles once they’re available.
The list of countries included in the initiative are the UK, France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands, and could be a great way to purchase the console if you're chosen.
To register your interest in a PS5, you must sign in to the PlayStation website with your PSN ID, and wait to be selected.
If picked, you'll essentially be reserved a PS5 for a limited period, which means you can make your purchase without the stress of trying to beat thousands of others to checkout.
The site advises: “Please make sure your email address is the one associated with your PSN ID and that you are opted in to receive PlayStation emails. If selected, we will contact you via email before the event starts.
“If you are selected, we will contact you via email with the date, time and instructions for your opportunity to purchase a PS5 console. Registering does not guarantee that you will receive an invite.”
Due to limited stock, the initiative is restricted to one console per user, and each selected customer has a limited window to secure their new console. if the user is greeted with a “sold out” message when they log in after receiving an invite, it means that all PS5s will have been purchased, sadly.
Analysis: it’s well worth signing up
PS5 production has been bottlenecked ever since the console's launch, with demand for the next-gen flagship console far outstripping supply, partly due to the global semiconductor shortage, as well as due to supply chain difficulties associated with the Covid-19 pandemic.
It’s not just Sony being affected, however. Microsoft, Apple, Nvidia, and other tech giants have all struggled to fulfill the demand for their latest products, with limited stock and delayed product launches.
The result is a market that has largely been dominated by scalpers selling consoles and GPUs at dramatically inflated prices with the help of bot networks to secure consoles seconds after they go on sale.
Sony and PlayStation’s issues have in fact been so pronounced that it reportedly made more PS4s available in an attempt to give consumers an alternative.
Despite this, the PS5 remains a best seller. As of September last year, Sony reported over 13.3 million units sold across its digital and disc versions. Comparatively, over the same time period, Sony reported 13.8 million PS4s sold. The PS4, however, launched free of the supply issues that have constrained PS5 purchases.
Furthermore, the PS5 is driving strong software sales. Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales has been a top seller through the entirety of 2021 across PS4 and PS5.
If Sony can somehow crack the code of PS5 production, and get its powerful white boxes directly into more consumers’ hands, we could be looking at one of the most successful consoles in history. The PS4 sold very well indeed, shifting well over 116.6 million consoles as of September 30, 2021, and is reportedly the fourth highest-selling console of all time.
The PS5 could well surpass the PS4 and rival even the mighty PS2, then, if Sony can make enough in the first place. Selling directly to the consumer is an effective way of avoiding the scalping that many third-party retailers have experienced, but there’s a long way to go yet. The real test will be how many become available, and how soon.
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