By Jamie Hill
For me, personally, the news of the PS5 being released couldn’t have come at a better time. For months of lockdown my old PS4 had been played within an inch of its life, so the chance of getting my mitts on something shiny and new really got me salivating. Then November 2020 came and went and it immediately became clear that getting hold of one would be more difficult than that time I put on one of my children’s jumpers as a joke and couldn’t get out of it.
It’s become an addiction. Every morning, I get up and now have various websites to check to see if the fabled PS5 is in stock.
There’s Amazon, Very, Currys, Argos, Game and several others, as well as various other stock-checker websites, that are now perused by myself as regular as clockwork, usually three times a day.
But I might as well be farting in a windstorm for all the good it’s doing me as on every occasion the PS5 is never in stock.
There are sites that sell it, like Ebay or StockX, but to buy one off of one those sites, you would have to be willing to pay £200 or £300 over the odds just to be in with a chance. And when you’re spending £450 in the first place to get hold of one, it’s hard to reconcile spending a few hundred quid more. But it’s hard to hunt for a bargain. It’s not like spending your Tesco vouchers as essentially with hardly any PS5s available getting a good deal on one at the moment would be like finding the lost city of Atlantis. There are a few second hand used consoles on the market especially if you’re willing to hunt around in your local Cash Converters but because of their rarity, they still a few hundred pounds than the RRP of a brand new one.
So my search continues and every day I wake up with the vague hope that today will be the day that I finally get hold of the elusive PS5.
And you can be rest assured I’ve definitely been looking into the reasons behind this collosal hold-up as it’s now been nearly a year since the actual console’s release.
Well, it comes down to various things, but the main reason is a shortage of chips.
During the various lockdowns laptop and PC sales went through the roof. I mean really went through the roof. This was a combination of so many more people working from home and essentially everyone moving their lives into the digital realm as real-life socialisation was not exactly something you could do any more.
The knock-on effect of this was that the chip manufacturers went into overdrive to keep up with demand which has led to a chip shortage when it came to the rollout of this new console, which you guessed it, uses a chip found in laptops. This global chip shortage is impacting technology across the board but when you’ve got a high-demand product like a PS5 the impact is almost catastrophic.
Obviously, at some point this situation will right itself and Sony will be able to eventually get enough chips to keep up with demand, but until then the consoles are going to be like gold-dust, with the only real winners being the more nefarious re-sellers who can set up a robot thing to grab up any stock as soon as it is released and then sell them on for a massive profit for people willing to pay through the nose.
Think ticket touts who upsell Elton John tickets but swapping Elton for a console with loads of bells and whistles.
It’s a crappy situation but it’s looking like, unless I’m extremely lucky, I definitely won’t be getting hold of a PS5 this side of Christmas and maybe well into next year.