Sony appears remarkably confident that the coronavirus outbreak will have virtually zero impact on the PlayStation (PS5) launch scheduled for later this year. But some industry analysts disagree, and it’s not difficult to see why.
The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted almost every aspect of life, and the gaming industry has not been immune to the unprecedented economic shutdown. Servers are crashing, downloads are slowing, and physical releases are suffering delays. Billions of people have been ordered to self-isolate in their homes.
Yet Sony wants us to believe that the PS5 launch will proceed exactly as planned. At best, the PlayStation creator is deluded. At worst, they’re lying.
It’s looking more and more like the effects of coronavirus will linger indefinitely. And less and less like the PS5 and Xbox Series X releases will proceed without significant headwinds.
For one thing, China is one of the countries that was worst-hit by coronavirus. While they are ramping up their production capacity, the long-term impact of the outbreak on supply chains remains to be seen.
Even if console production doesn’t become an issue, the economy probably will be. Once this whole horrible mess is finally over, millions of people could be facing financial ruin. It seems like a terrible plan to release an expensive entertainment device at a time when customers may have very little disposable income.
I’m confident Sony realizes all this. But they also realize that the last thing they need is to give already-jittery investors a reason to dump their shares.
It’s no surprise that sales have begun to taper as the current console generation comes to an end. The PS5 is supposed to fix that. Any delays to the device’s holiday launch could put pressure on Sony’s stock price.
No matter what Sony says, there is a very real possibility that the PS5 won’t launch in 2020.
And if they do ship the console this year, gamers had better brace for supply constraints and sky-high street-prices.
Either way, I’d advise you to prepare for the worst. We might be stuck with our last-gen hardware for a little longer than we all expected.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of CCN.com.
This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.