Ouya, the $99 Android-powered gaming console that set Kickstarter records last year, has already sold out in many stores only hours after launching. The small, affordably priced console has already sold out on Amazon, and according to first-hand accounts on Reddit, it’s quickly disappearing from shelves at Best Buy stores nationwide.
Initially, the Ouya was set to launch on June 4, but after its massively successful Kickstarter campaign last year, the release date was pushed back to Tuesday.
"The number beat our internal expectations, and that's why we had to delay the launch from June 4 to June 25,” CEO Julie Uhrman told Mashable on Monday.
Now, the console appears to be a huge success both on Kickstarter and in the general market. It should still be possible to pick up an Ouya from retail stores, however. While many Best Buy locations have sold out of the console, a quick search on the company’s website shows that at least four locations in the New York City area are still selling the console. Results should be similar in other major metropolitan areas. Consumers in areas with fewer big box stores may have difficulty finding the console, however.
When it appeared on Kickstarter last July, the Ouya passed its $950,000 goal in less than 24 hours, ultimately earning $8,596,475 and attracting 63,416 backers — more than eight times its initial fundraising goal.
Still, the Ouya’s high launch-day sales numbers haven’t exactly equated to good reviews. PC Mag, Joystiq, and iDigitalTimes have all given Ouya bad to mixed reviews, claiming that the console suffers from unresponsive controls and too much lag. According to PC Mag, the Ouya is “presently an ungainly mess of a consumer product that requires more work than it's worth to get the most out of it.”
That’s not the only problem with the Ouya launch day, either. While the console is sold out on Amazon and at most retail stores, a simple glance at Ouya’s Facebook page shows that many Kickstarter backers are still waiting to receive their consoles. According to a June 8 story from Kotaku, as many as 7,5000 of the 63,000 Ouya backers still haven’t received a console. While that number has likely fallen somewhat since, it still appears that a significant minority of Ouya Kickstarter backers are waiting on their console.
"I am pissed. Some of you have not yet received your OUYA -- and, to you, I apologize. I did not promise to ship to *most* of you before we hit store shelves. I promised to ship to *all* of you. I’ve been reading your comments, and we are working to solve this," an Ouya representative wrote on Facebook Tuesday.
Most of the Kickstarter backers have already had the Ouya for months, however. The console was first shipped out to Kickstarter backers in April. While they received a complete console, however, the system’s software was somewhat incomplete at the time, and early recipients were encouraged to think of their console as a preview, rather than the full experience.
Eric Brown is an IBTimes political reporter who eats far too much pizza. He is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and currently resides in Brooklyn.