Best Buy Online PS3 Preorder Program
Late Saturday night, eager and surprised would-be PS3 owners found that Best Buy had the system listed for preorder online. Everything about the process appeared legitimate, and consumers believed they'd be able to secure a PS3 without waiting in long lines or even camping out the night before November 17.
Still, questions immediately arose, as Best Buy normally doesn't allow preorders. But in this case, reports circulated around the Internet of customers successfully filling out up to 15 PS3 preorders at BestBuy.com by using different accounts. In short, things went pretty nuts for at least a few hours until several people contacted a Best Buy representative regarding this matter. PSX Extreme called in to confirm and got the bad news as well.
Apparently, the entire preorder program was nothing more than an unfortunate system glitch. The rep said that, as we expected, Best Buy does not do preorders and that anyone who prepurchased a PS3 online will not receive the console, but will certainly get a full refund. Furthermore, it's now become crystal clear that all participating Best Buy stores will open their doors at 8 a.m. on November 17. At that time, an employee will hand out PS3 tickets that correlate to the exact number of PS3s in stock at that time. In other words, if you show up and receive a ticket, you can saunter in and purchase a PS3. If those tickets are gone when you get there, you're outta luck.
The listing confused a lot of people, we're sure, but at the very least, we now know exactly how Best Buy is approaching the PS3 launch. And as before, if you're interested in picking up a console on November 17, we suggest you get there early. Really early.
UPDATE: Please note that our source of information is a BestBuy.com customer representative. While this is not a high ranking or most credible individual at the company, based on the tone of the conversation, he sounded very confident. This leads us to believe that the BestBuy.com staff was already briefed and that this is their stance on the PS3 Preorder situation.
UPDATE 2: We received official confirmation that all orders are being cancelled. See the full email from Best Buy here.
11/6/2006 Ben Dutka