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PS4 pre-orders outperform previous Sony console releases in Australia

Pre-orders of the PlayStation 4 in Australia have broken pre-order records for Sony consoles and devices released in the region, according to Sony Computer Entertainment Australia's managing director Michael Ephraim.

While Ephraim was unable to disclose exact pre-order figures for Australia, he revealed to Polygon at a PS4 launch event in Sydney, Australia, that pre-sales figures for the next-generation console have surpassed pre-orders of any previous gaming hardware released in the country, such as the PlayStation, PS0ne, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita and the PlayStation 3.

"Australia is a PlayStation nation and the numbers are very, very solid," he said. "I have been around for all of the consoles and I can tell you that it's the best pre-orders so far of any of the [Sony] devices."

The region's PS4 console pre-orders are backlogged until 2014, as some retailers are unable to fulfill orders until next year. Ehpraim mentioned that backlog is a result of underestimating the popularity of the console.

"I just think the response was overwhelming, I don't think that [the backlog] is just in Australia, it is in several countries," he said. "So we are working as fast as possible to bring more stock in, Australia is an important territory for PlayStation. As we have been saying around the world, the response has been overwhelming and we'll do our best to bring it in to replenish in early 2014."

According to Ephraim's understanding, some Australian retailers are still accepting pre-orders, although "things are moving very fast." "We have allocated stock to retailers, either they have been very aggressive in pre-orders or held back some stock," he said. "So there are still PS4s that people can pre-order in Australia, by my understanding."

Leading up to the console's launch, Sony has been pushing the PS Vita's integrated features with the console. These features include second screen functionality through the official PlayStation smartphone application and PS4's Remote Play capability, which allows supported PS4 games to be played on the PlayStation Vita via a wi-fi connection. Announced games that support the feature include Diablo 3Assassin's Creed 4: Back Flag, Resogun and many more.

To make buying that extra piece of hardware more attractive to consumers so they can leverage the features, Ephraim said that Sony is "looking at " Vita price drops and possible handheld/console bundles.

"So definitely we see the opportunity for consumers to enjoy the Remote Play aspect of the PS Vita and the PS4, so there will be offers on the marketplace," he said, mentioning a recent JB Hi-Fi promotion offering a Vita bundled with a game for AU$199, which normally retails in the country for AU$269. "And we'll re-look [potential offers] and reassess it, and might come out with more promotions next year."

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