If shoppers can’t get the next-gen console they want, what will they do?

Graeme BruceBusiness Data Journalist
September 24, 2021, 7:00 PM UTC

The worldwide semiconductor shortage continues to wreak havoc on supply chains across many sectors, particularly gaming consoles. As we gear up for the all-important holiday season, a new YouGov Direct survey reveals what consumers may do if they can’t get their hands on a next-generation console. 

In the United States, roughly half of consumers who indicated it has been harder for them to purchase their first choice of gaming console say they will seek out an alternative product (52%). In Great Britain, that number is higher at 63%. 

The PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X have both been hard to come by. However in some markets, it has been easier to get the less expensive (but less capable) Xbox series S, which may give Microsoft’s entry-level offering a competitive advantage. 

The latest consoles from Xbox and PlayStation have been elusive to consumers. Substantial changes to worldwide demand for products during the pandemic caused a semiconductor shortage. This shortage has been met with increased demand for the new console offerings. 

 Three in ten consumers shopping for consoles in both Britain (30%) and the United States (32%) say they are willing to wait for their first choice to become available. For those holdouts, industry observers say it will be well into 2022 before the supply chain for consoles is ironed out. 

Data shows consumers in the US are more likely than Brits to give up on their search. A marginal proportion of Brits who have had a hard time buying a console say they’re likely to stop searching, while one in ten (10%) Americans will stop hunting.  

Receive monthly topical insights about the gaming and esports industry, straight to your inbox. Sign up today. 

Discover more gaming and esports content here 

Start building a survey now with YouGov Direct 

Methodology: YouGov polled 2,000 US adults online on September 21, 2021 between 3:42 p.m. and 6:29 p.m. ET. YouGov polled 2,000 GB adults on September 21, 2021 between 8:28 p.m. and 10:26 p.m. BST. The surveys were carried out through YouGov Direct. Data is weighted by age, gender, education level, political affiliation, and ethnicity. Results are nationally representative of adults in the United States and Great Britain. The margin of error is 3% in the US and 4% in Great Britain for the overall sample. Learn more about YouGov Direct.