It Shouldn’t Be This Hard to Get a PlayStation 5

Jeffrey Van Camp: Yeah. Hello. Good to be here.

MC: Jeff, please tell us, when did you first start trying to buy one of these things, and how did it go?

JVC: I don’t know. There’s a good time to really start trying to buy one of these. At first I didn’t want one. This kind of goes back to what Alan was saying. I have a 4K TV, but I can do almost everything on it that I can on my PS4. But some friends and family slowly started getting them, the preorders seem to sell out really quick, and I kind of began to get the FOMO.

LG: And when was this Jeff?

JVC: Somewhere around Black Friday, I think I started, which is probably the worst time to start trying to get a PlayStation or really anything. So yeah, I tried. The first place I tried was Best Buy, and of course, being in the pandemic, normally you might think about going to a store, but everything is online this year. So yeah, I tried that, and it was one of the worst buying experiences I’ve ever had.

MC: How is that?

JVC: The site completely froze. They make you wait, you don’t know if you should be refreshing your browser or just waiting for it to pop up. They’re like, “PlayStations will drop in a minute here.” There’s some dots near where the Add to Cart button is, and then it just kind of stays gray, and you’re waiting for it to turn yellow. And then eventually it does, and it says, “Oh, sorry, it’s already sold out.”

MC: Did you try any other stores?

JVC: Yeah. So I tried that. I got the app, did a few more drops. Then I began learning more, started going to GameStop, Walmart. Sony does these online queues, so I tried there. The more I tried, the more I failed quicker it seemed, and it just kind of made me want it more.

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class=”paywall”>So I don’t know if this is planned. I kind of figured it was all due to Christmas, but January has rolled around and it’s still insanely difficult to get. Even after the holiday buzz wore off, by the middle of January, I have multiple Twitter alerts going, I’ve got Chrome extensions dinging, like during meetings, we could be filming this, and it might go off saying there’s a drop coming in 10 minutes. Yeah. It’s like failing to get a PlayStation 5 is a regular part of my workweek now.

LG: So, what you’re saying is that you started getting dings and alerts on your phone, and you look at it really excited and then say, oh, it’s just a vaccine appointment. It’s not the PS5.

JVC: Yeah.

LG: Right, right.

JVC: It’s not what I want.

MC: All right. Well that all sounds like a nightmare for you, Jeff, and as we know, you’re not alone. You’re not even alone on our staff, because WIRED’s own games editor, Saira Mueller, has also been trying to procure a PS5. Welcome to the show Saira.

Saira Mueller: Hi, happy to be here.

MC: Well, thank you for being on the show. Walk us through this. Why is it so hard to get a PS5 right now, and what has your experience been?

SM: Yeah, it’s really hard, I think, for a few reasons, and PlayStation hasn’t really exactly said why. There are a lot of theories running rampant on the internet, as you can imagine, and as is kind of typical. A lot of people are saying that Sony is purposely doing this. They are selling every single PlayStation that goes out to market, and that’s great for them. There’s a lot of PR buzz about the PlayStation right now, which is also good for them.