There have been gripping concerns that PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X may possibly be delayed due to the coronavirus outbreak. Both next-generation consoles are scheduled to launch during the holiday season at the end of the year and while that release window is still months away, prioritizing public safety and quarantine measures could possibly disrupt manufacturing and shipping.
According to a statement issued to LetsGoDigital by BAAS, an independent creative communications agency from Amsterdam representing Sony Interactive Entertainment Benelux, the coronavirus outbreak has not delayed the launch of PlayStation 5 — at least for the time being. Hence, as far as Sony is concerned, everything is on schedule for a worldwide next-generation launch within 2020.
The statement from Sony might be assuring for some. However, facts are that the coronavirus epidemic has already dismantled several industries and economies in the past months. Sony will likely continue to monitor the situation on a day-by-day basis. The company will probably refrain from a disorganized launch where there are PlayStation 5 availability issues across different countries. Should the situation refuse to change for the positive in the months to come, Sony will have no choice but to delay production and push the release window in 2021.
Last week, organizer and Entertainment Software Association (ESA) confirmed that the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3 2020) would be cancelled. ESA had previously assured to closely watch the situation, giving priority to the safety of all attendees. Hence, it was unsurprising to hear about E3 2020 getting cancelled at the end. The epidemic has already forced a number of publishers to pull out of several conventions in the past months. 2020 as a whole looks to be bleak as pretty much every public event or gathering has either already been cancelled, postponed or will eventually be in the coming months.
For PlayStation 5 and even Xbox Series X, Sony and Microsoft are unlikely to announce a release date and start taking pre-orders before the coronavirus situation has been dealt with.