The PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X next-generation consoles may be delayed into 2021 due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in China, according to a new report from Business Insider.
With both the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X scheduled for a holiday 2020 release, the coronavirus could greatly affect the production of the consoles. China is where most of the world’s electronics are manufactured, and their continually increasing cases of coronavirus have been well-documented.
As Business Insider reports, a note from Jefferies Group, a major investment bank and financial services company, has warned that if companies are shut down for a long period of time, it will affect release schedules.
“The video game sector is currently manufacturing, or beginning to, a once-in-several-years' product generation change for the 2020 holiday season,” the note said. “If [company] shutdowns exceed a month or so, game schedules will be delayed. New consoles may likewise suffer supply issues from a prolonged disruption, ahead of their Fall 2020 planned launches.”
What makes this even more concerning is that while games are developed in Europe, North America and Japan, nearly 100% of the manufacturing takes place in China.
Additionally, as much as “30-50% of art creation in western games is done" in the country, according to the report.
Not releasing the PS5 and Xbox Series X this fall, as had been scheduled, could affect sales, since the season has proved to be the most successful for previous generation consoles.
In November 2005, the Xbox 360 was released while the PlayStation 3 followed a year later on November 11, 2006. The PS4 hit store shelves on November 15, 2013 while the Xbox One arrived a week later on November 22.
If Sony and Microsoft are forced to change up their release dates, one has to wonder where they will land.
So far the Coronavirus has radically affected the industry on the esports front. Both Overwatch League and League of Legends Pro League have canceled events scheduled to take place in China.
In total, five homestand events were canceled as a result of Blizzard's decision.
As always, nothing is official until announced by Sony and Microsoft, so the consoles' release still stands as scheduled. We will, of course, continue to bring you the latest on this news as more information becomes available.