If you haven’t bought either a Playstation 5 or Xbox Series X/S yet and still want to get in on the ground floor of the next console generation, Best Buy just announced what might be your last chance to get one before Christmas.
On December 14th, the big box electronics chain published a blog post (opens in new tab) stating that it’s planning to restock both consoles on December 15th starting at 8 am Central/9 am Eastern time. The consoles will only be up for sale online, which isn't that surprising, but what's new is that you’ll only be able to pick them up through curbside pickup.
We don’t yet know how long supplies will last or if Best Buy is planning any more restocks in the following days. We wouldn’t be surprised, though, since the blog post says the console restock also kicks off the store’s “3-day sale” event for last-minute Holiday shoppers.
While online-only launches have become the norm during the pandemic, limiting something as big as a gaming console to curbside pickup is a new strategy. This is likely an effort on Best Buy’s part to counter bots, which have plagued major tech releases throughout the year by instantly buying up all available stock to resell at a higher price elsewhere.
We’re certain that plenty of scalpers are willing to take a car to their local Best Buy for a several hundred dollar profit, but this might at least stop bot users from ordering multiple units. It also means that the stock situation will be more individualized across specific stores, so it’s possible your local Best Buy might luck out and have some units left over for actual end-users.
Still, among other disappointments, this is the year of “sold out.” Good luck to all the keyboard warriors looking to snag a next-gen console. For everyone else, don't worry. You're not necessarily losing out by waiting to buy a next-gen console until game libraries get a little beefier.