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PS5 restocks are such a nightmare that Sony wants to sell you a PS4 instead

Sony PS5 on a table next to a TV
(Image credit: Future)

More than a year on from launch and hunting down a PS5 restock remains a rather thankless task. Over the last 14 months, Sony has seriously struggled to supply enough units to meet the intense demand for the machine. The gaming giant's latest solution to the next-gen console stock crisis appears to be attempting to sell customers a PS4 instead.

According to a new Bloomberg (opens in new tab) report, Sony had initially planned to cease production of the PS4 last year but has reserved that decision and will instead continue to manufacture the console through 2022. It’s expected that around one million PS4 consoles will be produced this year in an effort to ease some of the pressure on PS5 production. 

It’s believed that producing more PS4 consoles will also enable Sony to negotiate better deals with its manufacturing partners in turn making PS5 production run smoother. Regarding this news, a Sony spokesperson said: “[PS4] is one of the best-selling consoles ever and there is always crossover between generations.”

The PS4 was originally released in November 2013 and has gone on to sell a whopping 116 million units to date. This ranks it as the second best-selling home console of all time, behind only the PS2 which sold a pretty much untouchable 155 million units. 

Despite the ongoing supply shortage, the PS5 is the fastest-selling console in history. The next-gen console has sold roughly 14 million units through 2021 and is outpacing the PS4 at a comparative point in each console’s lifecycle. Industry expectations are that when the book is closed on both consoles, the PS5 will have outsold its predecessor. 

Even with the launch of the PS5, the PS4 remains a pretty attractive console. Not only does the console have a deep library of fantastic software, but upcoming Sony first-party exclusives including Horizon: Forbidden West, Gran Turismo 7 and God of War Ragnarok will be launching on both PS4 and PS5. Not to mention hugely anticipated third-party titles like Hogwarts Legacy and Elden Ring will be available on both platforms as well. 

Of course, the PS4’s day in the sun is (slowly) drawing to a close and there are a host of games on the horizon that will be exclusively for next-gen systems, as well as a few already available including Returnal and Demon’s Souls. Purchasing a PS4 in lieu of a PS5 is definitely a short-term solution. But if you desperately want a new console this instant, the PS4 is certainly the more readily available machine and is naturally cheaper than its successor (although prices are rising). 

If only a next-gen console will do, make sure to bookmark our PS5 restock hub. This comprehensive guide to buying a PS5 is updated daily with the news and updates. We can’t guarantee it’ll get you a PS5, but it will definitely make the task of tracking down Sony’s coveted console a little bit easier. 

Rory Mellon

Rory is a Deals Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on deals, gaming and streaming. When he’s not scouring retailers for PS5 restock or writing hot takes on the latest gaming hardware and streaming shows, he can be found attending music festivals and being thoroughly disappointed by his terrible football team.