COVID-19 cases are surging across the United States. Today marks a grim milestone as the country reports over 100,000 coronavirus cases in a single day, the largest one-day increase in infections since the pandemic began. Many hospitals are reaching capacity as the second wave threatens to collapse vital healthcare infrastructure.
Not wanting to add to the crisis, Sony has wisely decided to partially pull out of its own launch day celebration. The PS5 will no longer be sold in-stores on November 12, and instead will only be available for purchase online.
The announcement was made by senior director of content communications over on the PlayStation blog earlier this morning. “In the interest of keeping our gamers, retailers, and staff safe amidst COVID-19,” Shuman said, “today we are confirming that all day-of launch sales will be conducted through the online stores of our retail partners.”
What this means is that retailers will not be able to sell a PlayStation 5 console in-store. Only purchases made online will be valid, with customers than receiving their PS5 by mail or from curbside pickup.
“Please don’t plan on camping out or lining up at your local retailer on launch day in hopes of finding a PS5 console for purchase,” Shuman added. “Be safe, stay home, and place your order online.”
If you’ve already pre-ordered the PS5 as many already have, check with your local retailer to verify their safety protocols regarding curbside pickup.
Pre-orders for the PlayStation 5 are already through the roof, with units selling over 168 times faster than the PS4 during its first week of pre-orders. Some retailers are already warning customers that they might not receive their console until Sony improves their stock situation, which might not happen in some regions until 2021.
Sony expects to sell 7.6 million PS5s by March of 2021, which is more than the PS4 sold in its entire first year. The PS4 didn’t go on sale during a pandemic, however, and Sony certainly doesn’t want to be responsible for creating a third wave of COVID-19 infections just before Christmas.
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