The PlayStation 5 launches today — but you can't buy one a store, Sony says

  • The PlayStation 5 launches today, November 12.
  • But you can' walk into retail store and buy one, Sony said earlier this month. They'll be available through online storefronts and to customers who pre-ordered.
  • Sony cited the ongoing pandemic as the reason for the all-digital launch.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

When Sony's PlayStation 5 launches today, on November 12, it won't be available retail stores. Instead, it will only be available through online storefronts.

That's due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Sony said in a blog post earlier this month.

"In the interest of keeping our gamers, retailers, and staff safe amidst -19, today we are confirming that all day-of launch sales will be conducted through the online stores of our retail partners," the company said. "No units will be available in-store for purchase on launch day (November 12 or November 19, depending on your region)."

Traditionally, game console launches have inspired excited fans to line up at retailers hours or even days ahead of the launch.

Sony specifically advised against that. "Please don't plan on camping out or lining up at your local retailer on launch day in hopes of finding a PS5 console for purchase," the company said.

It's unclear when retailers will begin selling the PlayStation 5 in retail stores, and Sony representatives didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. At least one retailer, GameStop, said it will have units available for purchase in store on Black Friday, November 27.

Got a tip? Contact Business Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (, or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

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