After Sony’s unveiling of the PlayStation5 during a digital event in June, consumers have been keeping a close eye on the ability to pre-order the upcoming system. Fans expected to be able to pre-order the machine recently due to Amazon’s PS5 placeholder page going live, but unfortunately, you can’t quite place money down on a PS5 system just yet.
However, there are still some things you ought to know about PS5 pre-orders, especially now that we have pricing and release date information. In this guide, we’ll go through what you need to know about getting your hands on a PS5 at launch and what we know about pre-ordering.
Release date and price
The PS5 disc and digital versions will launch on November 12, 2020, in the U.S., Japan, Mexico, Australia, South Korea, and New Zealand, with the rest of the world getting the system a week later on November 19. Pre-orders go live starting September 17 at select retailers. Geoff Keighley also referenced user reports that some retailers are making inventory available a day ahead, on September 16.
Note: I am hearing some retailers may make inventory available today as well. Stay tuned.
— Geoff Keighley (@geoffkeighley) September 16, 2020
Despite concerns over exorbitant production costs, the PS5 matches Xbox Series X in terms of price. The disc-based version is $499, while the all-digital version is $399.
As for games, we know certain titles like Madden NFL 21, Destiny 2, Far Cry 6, Marvel’s Avengers, and others will include free upgrades from the PS4 to the PS5 versions. But the availability of PS5 games is a bit more ambiguous, as are their prices. Recently, the community was up in arms about NBA 2K21’s $69.99 PS5 and Xbox Series X prices, though it might be a publisher-by-publisher basis, as Ubisoft confirmed its next-gen games would remain at $60 for the time being. Sony’s first-party games, at least according to the PS5 launch lineup, will be $70 moving forward.
Retailer pre-order notifications
Certain retailers will also give the ability to sign up for pre-order notifications, similar to the way some handled the consoles of the previous generation. Below, we’ll list known retailers with pre-order notification signups. Simply input your information, and when pre-orders go live, you’ll get an email from the retailer letting you know it’s time to buy:
It also seems retailers will be limiting the number of PS5 consoles available to purchase at a time, at least if a supposed error found within the source code on the PlayStation Direct site is any indication. A user on ResetEra (as relayed by a Redditor) seems to point to an error message that reads “You can only purchase one version of the PS5 Console: Disc or Digital. You have already added one PS5 console to your cart.” While this leak is mostly unsubstantiated, it could mean Sony is cracking down on the system’s availability, regardless of which version you try to get. This leads many to expect retailers to do the same — limiting the number of PS5s you can pre-order. The supposed leak is in reference to PlayStation Direct only, but this could be the case across the board.
Recent Nikkei and Bloomberg reports also point to Sony increasing PS5 production by 50%, with an estimated 10 million units planned to hit store shelves by December 2020. This is apparently due to increased demand during the global COVID-19 pandemic. As Bloomberg notes, Sony started producing PS5s in June and “expects to assemble 5 million units by the end of September and another 5 million between October and December.” Again, this has not been confirmed by Sony, but given the two sources, it could very well be true.
Assuming pre-orders will be limited to one per household and the increase in production quantities, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to get your hands on one this holiday.
You’ll be warned before pre-orders go live
With past console launches, buyers were left scrambling to get their hands on the latest and greatest machines. Sites crashed due to the number of people trying to pre-order, and many were left with only the option of buying the coveted systems on eBay at the hands of scalpers. Others might have totally missed the ability to pre-order due to being at work or otherwise not being aware. Luckily, it seems Sony and retailers have thought ahead. Senior Vice President of Marketing at Sony, Eric Lampel, explained that consumers would be notified and warned before pre-orders for the PS5 go live, giving us plenty of time to prepare. In other words, you won’t have to worry about missing the window — as we should know the exact date and time we’ll be able to pre-order.
In reference to the Amazon page we mentioned above, which sparked the idea that pre-orders would be available soon, Lampel said to Geoff Keighley of the Game Awards, “We don’t know what happened there. We had nothing to do with it. I got a message from someone saying people are lining up at stores, and we had no idea why. We’ll let you know when pre-orders will happen. It’s not going to happen with a minute’s notice. We’re going to, at some point, let you know when you can pre-order PlayStation 5.” So you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing you won’t miss the pre-order window.
We now know when that window starts: September 17. The launch is only at “select retailers,” and we don’t know what retailers that includes. Furthermore, we don’t know how the pre-order process will work. So far, we only have a tweet from Geoff Keighley following the September PlayStation 5 event (more on that below). Sony later confirmed pre-orders going live on September 17, again without any specific information.
Open registration for pre-orders through Sony
Sony recently sent out emails to PlayStation fans, advising they could register for the possibility of being one of the first to pre-order the system through the company directly. You can register on the company’s site here by submitting your PSN ID. The site makes mention of limited quantities of PS5 systems and advises fans to “act fast” if an invitation is received. It’s unknown how Sony will determine who will get an invite, but what we do know is that invitations will be sent out via email (presumably the one tied to your PSN ID).
The company’s FAQ page further breaks down the number of quantities customers will be able to pre-order through the site, allowing only one system per PSN ID, two DualSense controllers, and two Puse 3D wireless headsets, among other accessories. The other important factor is that this is for customers in the U.S. only, as the FAQ reads “any orders that contain a non-U.S. based address will be cancelled.”
Keep in mind that this open registration is through Sony only and does not necessarily represent the way other retailers will be handling pre-orders, so if you miss getting one through the manufacturer, you may still be able to get your system locked down elsewhere. At this time, it’s still unclear how other retailers will handle pre-orders.
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