John Maynard Keynes already described in his general theory how demand determines supply. If there is a particularly large number of interested parties for a product, more of it will be produced accordingly. This simple market economy principle is put to the test in the Corona crisis – because lockdowns, closed factories and borders ensure that manufacturers cannot keep up with production.
This is currently likely to annoy the Japanese electronics manufacturer Sony in particular, because the company actually wanted to meet the enormous demand of console players with the Playstation 5 this year. Now it is said that Sony can produce millions of Playstation 5 consoles fewer than expected. The reported the news agency “Bloomberg”. Accordingly, the Japanese would have reduced the targeted amount from 15 million consoles to eleven million – a correction down of almost 27 percent.
Low production yields for graphics and CPU chips
According to “Bloomberg”, this correction of the production figures was due to manufacturing problems with the console’s so-called system-on-a-chip components. These are the components of the PS5 that house the processor and graphics chip.
The production yields of this component were up to 50 percent lower, as the news agency claims to have learned from informed circles. Although the numbers should now move in a satisfactory direction for Sony, the failures would have meant that the initially announced production numbers of 15 million units could no longer be achieved by March next year.
German fans are also nervous about Sony’s unusual pre-order policy in the USA: Instead of securing the devices as usual at Amazon or electronics retailers, gamers had to register with their Playstation account on the official Sony website. The Japanese themselves then choose who gets the chance to pre-order the device. It is not yet known whether a similar process is also planned in Germany.
High demand, few devices and only for selected fans – for many gamers these are currently not rosy prospects for a console to be launched. But a look at the start of the Playstation 4 gives hope.
Playstation 5: Advantage despite production difficulties
In November 2013, Sony released the Playstation 4. It was also sold out almost everywhere at the start – but by March of the following year Sony had only shipped 7.5 million units of the game console, the 10 million mark was only broken in the following spring.
Even if Sony can only ship 11 million of the planned 15 million PS5 consoles by March, the number is still well above that of the predecessor – which makes the chances of a console at launch significantly higher than seven years ago.
Sony has set ambitious goals. Goals that the company wants to achieve in the competition against Microsoft. The US company has meanwhile announced the price and release date of the competing Xbox Series X and Series S consoles: The consoles will cost 499 and 299 euros respectively and will be on store shelves from November 10th.
Although Microsoft has presented in terms of price and release date, Sony has the edge with fans. In a survey by the marketing agency Experience12, 84 percent of respondents said they were looking forward to the Playstation 5 more. Only 15 percent voted for the Xbox Series X.
In addition – and this should also give fans hope – only 34 percent of those surveyed said they would even want to buy a Playstation 5 by the time it was released, as the tech portal “Techspot” writes.
So it is quite possible that Sony’s offer will meet demand despite delivery difficulties. Especially since the company, as the industry expert Daniel Ahmad writes on Twitter, has chartered 60 aircraft for console deliveries.