Playstation 2 hits the Gulf — sort of

Sony Gulf will sell off 1200 Playstation 2 units online in the next few days, but general availability of the elusive games console has to wait until February of next year.

  • E-Mail
By  David Ingham Published  December 12, 2000

1200 units of Sony's in-demand Playstation 2 have been allocated to the Middle East region, but general availability in the Middle East will have to wait until February. Between tomorrow (the 13th) and midnight Saturday, video gamers will be able to log on to Sony's regional Web site and make an application to buy one of the 1200 machines.

If the number of applications exceeds 1200 — which is bound to happen if word gets around — then all the applicants' names will go in a hat and 1200 will be selected at random. Sony's asking price for each PS2 unit, with one game, is AED 1698.

"The demand for Playstation 2 has been phenomenal," said Haruyasu Nagata, managing director, Sony Gulf. "Although this eagerly awaited product is scheduled for launch in the UAE in the last week of February 2001, Sony Gulf has been able to secure 1200 units for sale during the festive season in December."

The successful applicants can collect and pay for their Playstations at Jumbo Electronics outlets in the UAE, or have them delivered by a courier that will collect payment on delivery.

Fans will be disappointed at the delay in general availability, but markets around the world are suffering from chronic shortages of the highly desired gaming console. Ian Stokes, European marketing manager for Sony, today said shortages were down to Sony's, "underestimating demand."

The company has, however, sold around 100 million units of the original Playstation. If reports that Sony is only managing to churn out 600,000 PS2 units per month are correct, then Sony has clearly had some serious problems getting its manufacturing up to speed.

With time, the company says those problems will be sorted. Then, it can begin focusing on external challenges, such as the arrival of Microsoft's planned X-Box games console.

Contrary to growing belief, Stokes believes X-Box will be launched and said that Sony considers it "a serious threat." "However, we've had five years of Playstation now and we've built up an enormous catalogue of games," said Stokes.

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code