It seems that Microsoft has been unable to meet the rampant demand for Xbox 360 hardware in the US, with retailers in the States and Canada claiming the recent shipment only the second since launch barely scratching the surface of unfulfilled pre-orders.
Retailers contacted throughout the US today paint a mixed picture with several major chains seemingly unaware that a refreshed stock was due. GameSpot
reports that some online retail outlets are refusing so commit to a delivery date before March of 2006, surprising news though likely to reflect a strategy of under-promise and over-delivery, pun not intended.
The same piece also quotes San Jose Mercury News reporter Dean Takahashi saying, "Microsoft is disappointed that it can't get more units of the Xbox 360 into the market. Various folks tell me it isn't a problem with chip yields. I think it's more of a systems issue, when the boxes come together. They're working on getting more units out.
Microsoft simply issued the following statement when questioned: We're working around the clock to deliver as many Xbox 360 consoles as humanly possible to meet the high consumer demand.
So again, punters turn their attention to the minefield that is eBay. Stories crop up on an hourly basis regarding various scams and so on, though legitimate Xbox 360 hardware sets are shifting for around $600 at time of press.