Sony Corp’s PlayStation 5 (PS5) console launched in core markets on Thursday to serious interest online, yet with first day real-world sales restricted to pre-order pick-ups because of the COVID-19 pandemic that has driven a blast in gaming demand.
Sony has made launch sales online just to keep up social distancing, calling for shoppers to “be safe, stay home, and place your order online”.
The next-generation console, which retails for $500 or $400 without a disk-drive, was sold out on significant retailing sites in Japan with some directing lotteries to distribute restricted stock.
On Japan’s top flea market platform from Mercari Inc, consoles were selling for more than $900.
Pent-up demand for the PS5, which offers cutting-edge graphics, faster load times and a new controller with immersive feedback, has been exacerbated by the pandemic, which has seen buyers run to gaming however has stressed supply chains.
Investigators see deficiencies of consoles from Sony and opponent Microsoft Corp, which dispatched Xbox gadgets on Tuesday, reaching out into 2021.