Imagine securing a PlayStation 5 for launch day, anxiously awaiting the arrival of your console, and then opening the box to find … a kitchen appliance instead. Or cat food. Or nothing is delivered at all, even though your order is marked as completed.
That’s what’s happened to a number of Amazon UK customers over the last 24 hours, in a situation that has left people trying to get a refund, and with PS5 stock very limited, the task of finding a console again.
The first sporadic reports of the wrong goods being delivered initially seemed too unlikely to be true – but they continued to show up late last night before the problem began to explode wider today. In addition, within Eurogamer we have now heard from friends and colleagues who are personally affected.
The wrong items included in each box are different, but the accounts are the same: a delayed delivery, then an Amazon box with clear tape instead of the company̵
Nintendo Life editor Anthony Dickens was one of those affected along with MTV journalist and presenter Bex in April-May.
So @AmazonUK looks like someone stole my (day late) PS5. Right outer box, wrong item. Where can I get help? @AmazonHelp @PlayStationUK pic.twitter.com/qBIZ3RHl1I
– Anthony Dickens (@antdickens) November 20, 2020
Happy # PS5 day everyone. Tried to document our revelation, but Amazon has fooled us with an unsolicited fryer instead (after providing password). Anyone else had this problem today? pic.twitter.com/99IUSzSJUU
– Bex April May (@bexlectric) November 19, 2020
This is what my ps5 looks like! Laugh out loud. F @ # k dig @ AmazonUK. pic.twitter.com/xO3gd3jzCy
– David hill (@hilly_cfc) November 19, 2020
Exactly the same thing happened to me, I got a George Foreman grill!
It looked like the box had been opened at some point as well.
Now I can not get a replacement because there is no stock anywhere in the UK even though I pre-ordered it 2 months in advance! pic.twitter.com/Cmg3BzVhvg
– Sam Felts (@Sam_Felts) November 20, 2020
So went to open my PlayStation 5, which I ordered from @AmazonUK, and found this! Someone replaced it with rice! I wish I shot! Pls RT! pic.twitter.com/VcSNce4Zgo
– iamadamsullivan (@iamadamsullivan) November 19, 2020
is it common practice to use sellotape as well as the tape from the Amazon brand? because this looks risky as hell pic.twitter.com/tebPK4lSV6
– yonic sleuth (@flagwithoutwind) November 19, 2020
Several people reported that a cart pulled up outside – as if to record delivery at a specific location – and then zoomed out. Here’s an example of a complaint about this from a person who then still got their console – though only after allegedly confronting the delivery driver further down the road:
@AmazonUK @amazonhelp Delivery guy marked my delivery as unsuccessful so he went to the back of the van outside my house and drove 20 feet down the road to the next delivery. Went out and got him to get the box out of the back and found the following manipulation. QR code mossed and box opened. pic.twitter.com/eeSl8rPMzl
– Christopher Green (@ CDGreen22) November 20, 2020
This morning, I spoke to Amazon customer Jamie Al-Kadhimi, who told me how he and his brother had both purchased PS5 consoles and organized them both to be shipped to his house. As it was not his brother’s usual delivery point, Amazon provided a unique code to ensure that the delivery address could only be verified by his brother in person. Jamie’s order, as it was in his own home, did not qualify for this.
Jamie told me that they tracked the courier with both consoles, but when the van arrived, only his brother’s console was handed over. (For deliveries with a unique code, this must be entered for the courier to register the item as delivered.) The courier even tried to bring his brother’s console back to the warehouse – saying that the box was slightly damaged and he could get him another one for a . Jamie’s brother refused.
As for Jamie, who assumed the driver would jump back with his own console from his van … he’s still waiting. The courier drove away and never came back.
Digital Foundry senior writer Will Judd had a similar problem – his order from GAME was registered as delivered to a neighbor, although he says it was never delivered by the Yodel delivery driver who stopped there and then drove off again.
# missing PS5 summary:
I was notified at 4.30pm that my @GAMEdigital PS5 was delivered to a neighbor even though I was in
2. Neighbor says a @YodelOnline courier spoke to them, they agreed to take the package to me, so the courier went out with PS5 (?!), Never to return pic.twitter.com/4CU9a4HGOp
– Will Judd ?? (@wsjudd) November 20, 2020
I spoke to another customer today with an experience similar to Will’s, albeit again from Amazon. Both he and a friend were waiting for PS5 consoles in their local area and tracking their cure. Both noticed that an Amazon van pulled up outside, so both saw their consoles marked as delivered, only for no actual delivery to be attempted.
Of course, the vast majority of people will have received their PS5 orders from Amazon yesterday fine – although Sony has not yet said exactly how many consoles it switched here in the UK on day 1. Many retailers have struggled with GAME delaying sales of its remaining stock yesterday morning and Currys had to abolish its own sale completely after taking orders prematurely.
It remains to be seen how Amazon can resolve the issues reported over the last 24 hours. Eurogamer has contacted the retail giant for comment.