This week, pre-orders for the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S opened up, and things did not go well for the company. Similarly to the PlayStation 5 pre-orders, websites crashed as people tried to get their pre-orders in. A lot of traffic online, like with the PS5, came from a pre-order bot designed originally to snipe sneakers. This bot is the backbone of a subscription service that allows people, for a monthly fee, to snag pre-orders without being bound by unit count restrictions and other rules.
One of the differences here, as opposed to the PS5, is that many of the people who attempted to pre-order had access to the models they wanted. Not everyone got their units, but it seemed as if there wasn't a large, forced limitation on the less expensive Xbox Series S, as we saw with the PlayStation 5 All Digital.
However, as we predicted when the names were announced, confusion was absolutely involved in the pre-order process. The Xbox One X versus Xbox Series X and the Xbox One S versus the Xbox Series S pose a lot of confusion for people less involved in the gaming world. As proof of the confusion, Amazon sales reports show that sales of the Xbox One X and Xbox One S shot up significantly during the pre-order process. In fact, at one point, sales increased by almost 750%. The most likely situation is that people were accidentally ordering the wrong product, but most gamers would look closely at the price to ensure they were pre-ordering the right product.
Another possibility, and one that we all hope is the reality, is that the pre-order bot actually got confused, and subscribers to the service are about to get shipped the current generation of Xbox hardware. While it would certainly be a disappointment for those trying to steal pre-orders, it would be true justice for these people to have older consoles show up on their doorsteps this week instead of pre-orders show up when the new consoles launch into the wild.