Sony reverses PS3 store shutdown as gamers still struggle to buy new PS5 console

Sony has reneged on its announcement to shut the PlayStation Store on the PS3 and PS Vita, so gamers will be able to continue to buy games on older consoles.

The console giant cut off access to its old web store, with users being met only by an error page in March 2021.

It was originally planning to remove support for the PlayStation Store on 2 July, but the company now says that was the “wrong decision”.

“When we initially came to the decision to end purchasing support for PS3 and PS Vita, it was born out of a number of factors, including commerce support challenges for older devices and the ability for us to focus more of our resources on newer devices where a majority of our gamers are playing on,” Jim Ryan, President and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment, wrote in a blog post.

“We see now that many of you are incredibly passionate about being able to continue purchasing classic games on PS3 and PS Vita for the foreseeable future, so I’m glad we were able to find a solution to continue operations.”

The PlayStation 5, which was launched in November 2020, remains near impossible to purchase around the world.

Despite increasing production ahead of the coronavirus pandemic, with the apparent expectation people would purchase twice as many consoles, the manufacturer has not been able to keep up with demand. Sony has blamed employees working from home and international travel restrictions, but has claimed that the pandemic was not a major cause of problems.

While the pandemic may not have initially impacted the PS5 market, it could have knock-on effects. Nvidia has warned buyers that due to a global chip shortage, caused by factory shutdowns, graphics cards and CPUs may be hard to find – something that will affect PS5 manufacturing.

“It is difficult for us to increase production of the PS5 amid the shortage of semiconductors and other components,” Sony’s chief financial officer Hiroki Totoki said after the release of recent results.

“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.”

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