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The clip shows huge stockpiles of boxes with a woman’s voice narrating: “This is why y’all don’t have the PS5s because Walmart’s hoarding all of them.”
The video, shared by TikTok user Hisham Hasan, has amassed more than 3.1 million views since it was posted on 12 October and prompted thousands of comments as users expressed disbelief.
The video fanned the flames of already existing rumours of possible hoarding of PS5 gaming consoles by Walmart. Japanese electronics giant Sony launched the latest version of its best-selling PlayStation, the PS5, on 19 November 2020. But ever since its release, the gaming console has been hit with shortages as the company was unable to keep up with the demand.
The consoles are quickly sold out as soon as the stocks are replenished. The company is facing customers’ annoyance for not meeting the demand as the appetite for home entertainment is said to have dramatically increased due to coronavirus-induced lockdowns.
Walmart stores reportedly haven’t had the consoles for much of October.
“Bro i swear to God you not lying, i worked at a walmart distribution center and they have over 2,000 ps5s i literally was touching them every second,” a user named Chris Patrick said.
Another said: “it’s been almost a year since released and still always sold out. Scalpers are ridiculous.”
Others suggested that Walmart is allegedly stocking up because the Black Friday sale and the Christmas season are around the corner. Another user suggested they are “probably planning to mass stock to curb the scalpers.”
A scalper refers to a person who buys in-demand items in bulk at regular price and resells them at a higher price when demand escalates.
Hiroki Totoki, Sony’s chief financial officer, recently revealed the reason for shortages, saying: “It is difficult for us to increase production of the PS5 amid the shortage of semiconductors and other components... We have not been able to fully meet the high level of demand from customers [but] we continue to do everything in our power to ship as many units as possible to customers who are waiting for a PS5.”
The Independent has reached out to Walmart for comment.