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The PlayStation 5 remains one of the hottest and most frustrating product in the world.
Despite it now being months since the release date in November, the console is still nearly impossible to buy, leaving players both desperate and weary for a way to get hold of the console.
Sadly, there is no sign that those problems will let up, or when the consoles will be around to buy like normal.
Here’s everything you need to know as you wait for a way to get hold of the PlayStation 5.
And in the meantime, you can read our review of the PS5, as well as our comparison of the console with the Xbox Series X.
They are unpredictable, usually appear without any notice, sell out as fast as they arrive, and often appear in the middle of the night. It means that anyone who gets a console is usually some combination of very lucky and very devoted.
They are also overrun with automated systems or bots that jump on any indication of stock and buy it. Often, they are then sold on the grey market at vastly inflated price.
All of which is to say that restocks are mostly upsetting experiences, and ones that are unlikely to leave you with a console. But they do happen, and so there is reason to hope.
How should I make sure I can get hold of one?
There are a whole host of tricks to stay on top of buying the console. Mostly they mean ensuring that you are as well- and quickly-informed as possible, in the hope that you can get there before the bots do.
Some websites – notably Stock Informer – offer the option to find where the console is on stock, though obviously for the most part it will simply tell you all the shops where it is out of stock. Stock Informer also lets you sign up to its Telegram channel, which will alert you to any updates.
There are also a host of Twitter accounts that claim to offer alerts when the consoles come in stock. They are all over the site and change regularly – @PS5StockAlerts is one of the most followed – and while it is worth being very careful about following any of their links, it can be worth turning on notifications for their tweets to get alerted to any new updates.
Doing all of this can, however, be a fairly stressful and miserable task. Your phone is likely to ping with alerts to consoles that you’re always too late to buy, leaving you both constantly bothered and always disappointed.
As such, it might be advisable, unless you are really desperate, to wait. At some point, supply of the consoles will match the demand, and buying one will be as simple as handing over your money to a real or online store.
As we wrote in our review, the PS5 is a very good console, and looks set to change the face of gaming. But it has not fully achieved that potential yet, and so you are unlikely to miss out all that much by waiting a few months.
When will the PS5 come back in stock?
While rumours regularly circulate that a major re-stock is coming – in February, it is sometimes said, or in the spring – there’s no indication that there will be any decisive point at which a load of new consoles will drop and everyone’s problems will be over.
Instead, it’s likely that restocks will happen more regularly and reliably. It’s true that’s likely to happen at some point in the next months, and that Sony has committed to do what it can to ensure that will happen as quickly as possible, but there is no firm information about when that might happen.
It is true, however, that there might be a tipping point of some kind, not least because when there is enough supply in shops then it will be much less attractive for resellers to buy up consoles with a view to selling them on – leaving more supply set aside for real buyers, and hopefully producing a virtuous circle. But there’s no real way to know when that will happen.
Where is selling the PlayStation 5?
At the time of publication, nowhere in the UK. But here are the links to the stores that are set to have them in stock at some point, for quick access.