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The PS5 shortage is over, says PlayStation boss

The company has sold 30 million worldwide, despite chip shortages and other problems

a man holding up the PS5 motherboard above the open case of the console
A PlayStation 5 motherboard. Supply chain shortages and other issues kept PS5 sales low despite white-hot demand worldwide.
Image: PlayStation/YouTube
Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

Two years after the console’s launch, the global PlayStation 5 shortage is officially over. So said Jim Ryan, the president of Sony Interactive Entertainment, at the Consumer Electronics Show 2023 on Wednesday.

“PS5 supply improved towards the end of last year,” Ryan said during a stage presentation in Las Vegas. “I’m happy to share that December was the biggest month ever for PS5 console sales, and that we’ve now sold more than 30 million units through to consumers worldwide.

“Everyone who wants a PS5 should have a much easier time finding one at retailers globally, starting from this point forward,” Ryan said.

The PlayStation 5 launched in November 2020, amidst a global pandemic and worldwide supply chain shortages associated with it. Finding a new-in-the-box PS5 at retail (as opposed to one sold for extravagant prices on the gray market) became something of a lifestyle for many over the past two years.

Last May, Sony told investors it had sold 19.3 million PlayStation 5 units, but the company said it was “very comfortable” projecting PS5 shipments of 18 million for the coming fiscal year, which ends this March.

The PlayStation 4, which launched in November 2013, sold 30 million units by November 2015. So the PS5’s retail performance is roughly the same, even with the component shortages and other considerations factored in.

Where PS5’s sales figures might really matter, though, is in the number of subscribers to the revamped PlayStation Plus, which Sony said lost almost 2 million paying members as of November.