Xbox Series X console reservation pilot scheme finally begins

Xbox Series X console reservation pilot scheme finally begins

After months of ignoring the scalper problem Microsoft is at last trying to make buying a next gen console fairer, but there is a catch…

One of the most frustrating things about the stock situation with the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S is that Sony and Microsoft have done absolutely nothing to mitigate it. Sony has never even commented on the situation publicly and while shortly after launch Microsoft talked vaguely about setting up some kind of lottery system it never happened… until now.

It’s taken six months to happen, but Microsoft has finally announced a pilot scheme to try and make distribution of the Xbox Series X and S fairer, although at the moment it’s only for the US.

It works via the existing Xbox Insiders Program, which allows fans to test new versions of the Xbox operating system before it’s released publicly. If you enrol as a member you’ll now also be able to sign up for a chance to buy a next gen console.

There are no guarantees, but if you’re picked randomly then you’ll be able to put down a pre-order to get a console the next time stock comes in.

It’s an incredibly straightforward system and yet it’s taken half a year for Microsoft to get around to organising it and even then it’s not available anywhere other than the US.

Better late than never though, which is more than you can say for Sony who have completely ignored the problem and have given no indication that will change in the future, despite warning that stock issues won’t be solved until at least this time next year.

Retailers could also have been doing a lot more to prevent scalpers from grabbing all the stock, but only Currys PC World and Box.co.uk have bothered to do anything similar in the UK.

Far too many companies have just washed their hands of the issue and pretended it doesn’t exist, which is especially galling when this news from Microsoft illustrates how easily it could have been prevented.

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