PlayStation 5 pre-orders open, but without a price or release date

Option will only be available to a select few, depending on their 'previous interests and PlayStation activities'

Andrew Griffin
Thursday 27 August 2020 08:14
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The PlayStation 5 is now available for pre-order – but without a price or release date, and only to those lucky enough to be chosen.

Sony is offering a limited run of the consoles through an invitation-only process on its website.

Potential players can apply through a form on the Sony website, and those lucky enough to be "selected" will be able to buy one of a very limited number of the consoles.

"There will be a limited quantity of PS5 consoles available for pre-order, so we will be inviting some of our existing consumers to be one of the first to pre-order one from PlayStation," a website reads. Users sign up to the website by handing over their PSN username – if they are successful, they will be sent an email inviting them to the pre-order process, through which a very small number of the consoles will be available to buy from Sony "on a first-come-first-serve basis".

Sony has not revealed how much the PlayStation 5 will cost, or when it will come out. Publicly, it has only said that the console will arrive for "Holiday 2020".

It gave none of that information to the people signing up to the pre-order page either. There is no indication to those signing up for pre-orders about when people will hear if they have successfully been given the option to buy a PlayStation 5, or when the consoles will arrive if they do.

The website does not even indicate that users will necessarily know that information before they go ahead with the pre-order.

Players who are chosen will only be able to use their invitation to buy one console, either the normal version or the "digital" one that comes without a disc drive. They will only be able to buy two of each of the accessories that Sony showed off at its reveal: wireless controllers, charging stations, its 3D wireless headsets, media remotes and HD cameras.

According to an FAQ page, the invitations will be issued "based on previous interests and PlayStation activities". It did not give any information about what that might mean, but customers must include their PlayStation Online ID in the form, meaning that Sony will know how long players have had an account and how often they use it.

Players can sign up to the pre-order process through a devoted page on Sony's website. Though it is only available on the US version of the website, an FAQ makes clear that any orders shipped to US addresses will be fulfilled, even if they are being bought by someone outside of the country.

As well as representing a strange way of being the first to pre-order PlayStation 5, the website is strange in that it entirely cuts out third-party retailers and encourages players to buy direct from Sony. Such a move could suggest that Sony will try and encourage more direct sales of the PlayStation when it receives a full release, too.

Even beyond details on the release date and price, Sony has only given limited information about its console. It has given a preview of how the console will look, as well as the design of its menus, and has spoken at length about how the very fast hard drive in the PlayStation 5 is set to dramatically reduce loading times.

Microsoft is still yet to reveal a price or release date for its Xbox Series X, which is set to rival the PlayStation 5. It had given the same "Holiday 2020" deadline, though earlier this month said that the console would be coming in "November".

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