Why not sell every PS3 on eBay at Christmas?

It seems to me that at least half of the number sold will end up there because the price will be outrageously high for the resold systems. Most folks may end up doubling their money.

So why doesn’t Sony just cut a deal with eBay and sell the entire allotment that way? Let people bid 'em up and make every last one sell for $600 or more. If you can’t meet demand, find out what your supply is actually worth instead of setting some arbitrary price for what’s obviously the greatest videogame system the world has ever known?

I’m only being halfway unserious here.

There would be terrible consumer backlash for that - did you forget the last like 16 threads we had on this where you basically had the same idea?

I wonder how many poor souls paid $1000+ for an eBay pre-order, not aware of the possibility that they won’t actually get their hands on it until sometime next year. I also envision them buying up games and accessories, shopping for an HDTV and a shiny new surround sound entertainment center, some BD-ROM movies…

Well, at least they’ll have a nice TV and entertainment center to tide them over.

Sony could prevent backlash by donating every dollar over $600 spent to charity.

You bet they could, and it’s pretty obvious that the price is too low if the preorders sell out in minutes. There’s more demand than there are systems. RAISE THE PRICE TO MAKE MORE MONEY, or at the very least do what AndrewM says and take people’s dumb money and use it for something smart.

Yeah, and I’ve never been proven wrong. I mean, analysts still believe the PS3 is going to be THE game system that everyone will own come hell or high water. Some article I saw today claimed that Microsoft’s on a ship with so many holes it’ll go down faster than the Titanic in the face of Sony’s mammoth iceberg ramming it to down Davy Jones’ Locker.

Why sell it for a loss at all? If it costs $800 or whatever to make these things, fucking charge people what it costs at least. Consumers don’t seem to give a shit. They’re out there waving their cash and get more pissed off when they can’t spend it!


Hmmm, sounds like a hot ticket in Japan. Weeeeee!

It’s possible that Nintendo rules Japan with an iron fist next generation. I doubt it, but time will tell.

Anyway, crazy Amerikanski’s want their PS3s!

Yeah, I doubt you’ll ever be “proved wrong” - even Sony isn’t dumb enough to ebay their systems, or to sell it for the cost of a cheap ass Dell machine.

As for my company’s future in the market, my opinions are obviously biased.

So because no one has tried your cockamamie (sp?) idea and seen it fail horribly with billions of dollars at stake…you’ve never been proven wrong?

why doesn’t every automaker with a highly-in demand automobile simply sell them for a s much as they can get? individual dealers certainly try it in various situations, but often are stopped from doing it by the manufacturer. because it’s a horrible idea in the larger scheme of things for a relatively small short term gain.

where were you when people were paying $10 for the saints row demo at toys r us? They should’ve sold them for $20 and made more, it was selling out everywhere.

I don’t know what the hell to think about this whole Ebay thing. On the one hand, it stands to reason that if a $300 PS2 without many appealing launch games can sell for a couple thousand on Ebay at launch, a $600 PS3 with few appealing launch games will do the same, if not better. But I can’t help thinking that there’s going to be some sort of backlash. I mean, at what point do people wise up and just wait for availability to get better?

I’m all for free market and all that, but it seems like there should be some way to discourage the hording and price gouging. Without all the people who don’t really want a PS3 buying it at launch, I suspect things would shake out much quicker as to which console is really going to dominate the market.

I also can’t help but think about the negative impact of ebay gouging on the perception of the PS3. I mean, at $600 the damn thing needs to really fire on all cylinders to impress people. Can you imagine the expectations of some moron who spends $2000 on it? Before you know it all the people who spent all that money will be whining all over the net about how the PS3 isn’t worth it. I mean, of course it isn’t worth it if you’re spending two grand just to buy it.

Who cares what it costs? Charge all you’re credit cards to the max, take out that 2nd and 3rd mortgage on the house buy everything you ever wanted.

Armageddon is almost here so who care how much debt you have? ;)

Never ever ever ever play your channel distributors.

My prediction-- there will be tons of PS3s and Wii (Wiis? Wee? Weem? What’s the plural?) at launch and everybody that buys dozens of each to resell on ebay will be forced to resell at below MSRP.


You’re going to be asking this in every PS3 thread for a month now, aren’t you, Dave.

That doesn’t ever stop you from commenting on Sony and Nintendo though!

Regardless of the eBay angle, Sony should have priced PS3 at cost at the very least. People would’ve paid whatever that cost is here in the US.

Nice thought but they could still return the units unopened to the store they bought it from for a refund. That’s part of the problem: There’s no real risk involved.

Umm, no. They could put the price at $1000 or even $2000 and the preorders would sell out in minutes because people want it, and so they will do whatever it takes to get it. On top of that, there’s plenty more people that can afford that kind of price than units available to be sold.

Oh wait. I forgot. You are the guy who thinks that Sony should price it really high until a big price drop once units are available, right?

An economist looked at this very question with regards to the Xbox 360 last year, here and here.

Summary of his conclusions why Microsoft wouldn’t go the auction route:

  1. Afraid of riling regulators
  2. Most customers would object out of principle
  3. Too disruptive with regards to advertising/distribution
  4. The “true” price of a new console isn’t the $1000 eBay price; the few 360s which were snapped up on eBay were bought by desperate gamers who couldn’t get one any other way. More consoles on eBay would drive the secondary market price down close to the original price.

As he says, the early scarcity of a new console means you’re going to irritate the customer with either long lines or high prices to ration the availability. I reckon people think that the first is more fair.