The PS5 could soon become much easier to find — in Asia, anyway

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It’s been two long years, but the PS5 may be ready to transition from “hot commodity” to “everyday electronic.” Sony Interactive Entertainment president Jim Ryan recently declared that the PS5’s supply issues are essentially “resolved,” and that customers in Japan and other Asian regions should be able to find the console much more easily by the end of the year. What this means for the rest of the world is slightly unclear, however.

Information comes from the official Japanese PlayStation Blog, run through Google Translate. The post was primarily about the PlayStation Partner Awards, which took place on December 2 at the Tokyo International Forum. At the event, Ryan gave a short speech via video screen:

“We would like to inform everyone that we have resolved the long-term supply issue of PlayStation 5 and will be able to deliver it to many customers in Japan and Asia from this year-end shopping season to 2023,” he said. “We apologize for the inconvenience.”

There are a few important caveats to note here. First and foremost, we’re reliant on Google Translate, which may not have delivered Ryan’s full context. When Ryan says that Sony has “resolved the long-term supply issue of PlayStation 5,” it’s not clear whether he means all around the world, or specifically in Asia.

It’s also not clear whether Japan and other Asian territories will get the bulk of new PS5s, or whether Ryan was singling out those regions because that’s where the awards show took place. It’s possible that the PS5 supply could stabilize in Asia first, and the rest of the world later — and, if so, we have no timeline for “later.”

Finally, it’s important to remember that Ryan promised to be able to deliver the PS5 to “many” Asian customers, rather than “most” or “all.” That suggests that the PS5 will have to catch up with residual demand before it becomes widely available. If that’s the case, then prospective buyers should expect one last big PS5 shortage before the device starts showing up regularly on store shelves.

Still, Ryan’s speech should come as good news to anyone who’s been fruitlessly hunting for a PS5 all this time. Declaring a supply issue “resolved” is a bold statement, and Ryan would not have said it without some kind of plan to back it up. (His board of directors and shareholders would see to that, if nothing else.)

In our own observations, the PS5 is considerably easier to find this year than last year. In fact, as I write this, the God of War Ragnarok PS5 bundle is in stock at Best Buy (opens in new tab), and has been for hours. This just would not have happened at the same time in 2020, or 2021. Pick one up, if you like — or wait a few months, since PS5 restocks are supposedly about to get a whole lot better.  

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