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June 12, 2021
PHOTO CREDITS: THE VERGE
The next generation of consoles, the Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X, launched on November 12 and 10 respectively, but sold out almost instantly, according to the New York Post.
The consoles have been nearly impossible to buy for those who didn’t preorder the system back in September. It appears that the next time the systems will be available will be Black Friday, when many big retailers will make their latest shipments available. Best Buy, whose PS5 and Xbox pages have shown the items sold out for months, has advertised that it will have “limited quantities” available on the major shopping holiday, while Walmart has confirmed that it will have some units in stock on its website.
According to CNN Business, many analysts think that Sony and Microsoft purposefully limited how many units were produced. Profit margins on the new PS5 and Xbox Series X are probably “thin or even outright in the red,” according to IDC’s research director of gaming Lewis Ward, so it made sense to set production limits. Sony and Microsoft likely considered production levels that wouldn’t put huge stress on the manufacturers and the supply chain and that could help them limit any revenue losses, he said.
Another possibility is that Covid-19 played a role in limited supplies. Niko Partners senior analyst Daniel Ahmad said that he anticipates the PS5 and Xbox Series X will continue to be supply-constrained this holiday season because of the pandemic’s impact on production and logistics. Ahmad also said that during initial production, both consoles had low yields and “it will take some time to scale and ramp up to meet demand.”
ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR: CONNOR KMIECIK