With the PS3 launching in Japan with only 88,000 units, the resale market is booming. In North America, Ebay buyers are already paying more than double for a PS3.
In Japan, reports of homeless people being paid to wait in line by Japanese businessmen and Chinese visitors flying in for a chance at the console have lead to outcry that Sony should have had more units available for launch. With so many Japanese fans going home empty-handed after long waits in line, desperate consumers are spending up to three times the retail price tag for an early shot at the new system.
Pre-order slips for the PS3 are already selling for $1700 US or more on Ebay as the North American launch nears. After shortage issues with the Xbox 360, larger stores like Best Buy and the Canadian Future Shop have refused to take pre-orders, instead creating potential havoc with first come, first served launch day plans. Users in Burbank, California had already begun to line-up for a PS3, only to be dispersed by the police for loitering.
With the PS3 launching this Friday and the Wii to follow on Sunday, retailers are bracing themselves for what is sure to be a hectic three days.