Sony to produce limited units of the PS5 during launch year

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There’s bad news for all console gamers out there as Sony will most likely limit the production of its upcoming PlayStation 5 during its first year. This rumor happens to be from a report by Bloomberg which claims to have some inside information on the Japanese electronics giant. It says that, compared to previous-gen consoles from the same company, the new PS5s will be fewer in number during the first year of production.

Now, for those who don’t know, the launch of Sony’s 5th Generation PlayStation console was just around the corner when the COVID-19 situation happened. This resulted in multiple delays as events were being canceled and the whole world went into quarantine. Even the reveal of the DualSense controller didn’t go as Sony would’ve wanted but there was no other way.

Image: sony.com

Because of COVID-19, Sony’s further plans for the promotion of the console have also been thwarted. However, unlike what most people may believe, Sony’s decision to limit production was not because of COVID-19. In fact, the global pandemic had nothing to with this, which may come as a shock. The stated reason for this is actually the pricing.

As many may know from earlier speculations, the upcoming PS5 will be packing some mindblowing specs making it one of the most powerful pieces of gaming hardware. This would result in an inevitable increase in its price. According to the aforementioned report, the price of the next-gen console has been anticipated to be between $499 and $549, which is the highest it has ever been for any PlayStation. The image below explains how the prices of expensive and scarce parts alone can bring up the overall price of the console.

Image: bloomberg.com

If we are to talk numbers, it’s reported that Sony had told its assembly partners that it would be producing only 5 to 6 million units of the PlayStation 5 till March 2021. In comparison, the PlayStation 4 sold 7.5 million units in the first two quarters of this launch. This would mean all the gaming enthusiasts, who would want to get their hands on the PS5 first, would experience a global shortage. Would this really Sony’s recipe for self disaster?

Well, not quite. According to several analysts, Sony might have a strategy to make sure this doesn’t sabotage its sales. That strategy involves the sales of the remaining PS4 models out there. When a new console launches, people who can’t afford the new console (which there will be many for the PS5), tend to go for the previous-gen models as they get cheaper.

So, when the PS5 launches, the price of the PS4 models will go down significantly and more people will buy it. More people who buy PS4s equate to more people joining PlayStation Plus membership program and PlayStation Now game streaming service. This happens to be Sony’s new strategy where it focuses more on increasing recurring revenue rather than one-time hardware purchases, which is genius, to say the least.

Image: pcmag.com

Even though COVID-19 has surprisingly nothing to do with this, it might in the future, depending on how things are. The launch of the console might get delayed as the majority of the Sony employees have been asked to work from home, most meetings are being postponed due to the unavailability of the relevant personnel. It’s not just limited to the production and launch of the console but the production of games as well.

Do you think that it would be wise for Sony to launch a console in a situation like this? Will their decisions regarding the PS5 prove to be successful over time? Let us know your views in the comments.

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