Sony is set to drop its biggest PS5 restock yet as gamers grow ever more frustrated with scalpers scooping up the in-demand consoles, it has been claimed.
Insiders are predicting March 8 will see retailers across the board receive a major restock, five months after the original release in November.
The pandemic has seen a surge in popularity for video games and streaming services like Netflix, with so much of the world having been in lockdown for months.
According to PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan, 4.5million PS5s were sold by the end of December, and one in four buyers didn’t already own a PS4.
Speaking this week, he apologised to those still waiting to get their hands on the elusive gaming machine – something made even more difficult by scalper bot groups.
Popular Twitter stock checker PS5 UK Stock – Instant Updates tweeted this morning: “March is going to huge for PS5 stock.”
It went on to say: “We’re expecting two major shipments to big retailers. Amazon, Argos, Currys and Very are dropping first week March and end of March! Don’t give in to the scalpers, we’re so close!”
The page had said on Tuesday: “March restock will be the biggest yet for all retailers. GAME has been adding bundles for a few days in anticipation for March 8.”
Meanwhile, Mr Ryan told GQ magazine, in an interview published yesterday: “Obviously in a pandemic supply chains become a little more complicated than would normally be the case.
“We had to move to a distribution model that is entirely online and that’s something that we never had to do before.”
He added that the sheer level of demand for the PS5 had also been a major factor, and likely would have caused issues aside from the pandemic.
However, he went on to say supply “will increase as each month passes” and the company has been “relentless in terms of trying to increase production”.
PS5 fans were left furious earlier this week when rogue consumers put fresh supplies of consoles onto eBay for insane prices.
One stock checker, using the handle @UKPS5Notify, blamed scalper bots and said the ads were “going against” eBay’s pre-order listing policy.
Sellers had managed to secure pre-orders from GAME after a major new batch dropped on Tuesday, before advertising them on the auction site before even receiving them.
The standard machine costs £449.99, while the digital edition comes in at £359 – but listings as high as £800 were appearing on eBay.
It is hoped extra stock would cause bulk buyers to have to plummet their asking prices or end up getting lumbered with consoles they have to sell for less than retail price.
Scalping bots continuously monitor websites for products that are limited in stock, with subscribers paying monthly subscription fees for the service.
The moment they become available, the bot has the user’s payment details ready to go, to secure the items within milliseconds, making it near impossible for a human to compete.
One subscriber to a scalping ring boasted on social media he had used the service last month to pick up seven consoles from four different outlets.
There have also been previous reports of those using scalpers to bypass checkout queues on major retailer websites.
GAME has previously played down reports one scalping group had secured 2,000 consoles in a day.
It has since said it has “strong measures” in place to ensure only one console is being offered per customer.
As previously reported, Sony are set to mass produce a whopping 18 million PlayStation5 consoles in the coming months in an effort to meet rocketing demand, according to reports.
Industry news site Digitimes claimed that PS5’s will be far easier to get hold of later in the year.
“Production for Sony’s PS5 games consoles is likely to reach 16.8-18million units in 2021,” Digitimes insiders claimed.