If you're interested in preordering a Sony PlayStation 3 you had better get your wallet out. At least, if you're shopping in the UK. There's word going around that Sony wants to require retailers to force customers to pay a large deposit in order to reserve a console. £150, to be exact. The reason, you ask? Why, it's all in the name of fairness.
The reasoning is to stop too many consumers ordering multiple units, due to very low deposit charges. The firm is keen to limit an explosion of expensive eBay offerings, a situation that occurred in the U.S as well as other countries with the launch of Xbox 360 last year. PS3 units are likely to be equally difficult to find.
While it's admirable to want to put consoles in the hands of fans and not just eBay opportunists, this does bring to mind a question I've had for quite some time. If Sony is aware that fans will pay megabucks (or megapounds, in this case) for hardware, why doesn't Sony skip retail and just sell PS3s via eBay in order to collect the excess profit themselves? Not all PS3s, just a nice chunk of inventory. It seems strange for Sony to leave money on the table like that.