Considerably cheaper than the Xbox One and able to play most titles above 900p, the Sony PS4 will be in limited supply all the way up to April.

PlayStation UK managing director Fergal Gara said to MCV “I can’t work it out precisely. But based on what I’ve seen so far, I think it is going to be tricky until around about April.”

“You might get a fortnight or a week here or there where it is more available, but we should be back to free supply by about April, he added. “That’s our best guess. It might be a little earlier than that, or it might be a little later. But we’ll get there.”

According to Gara, the PS4’s success exceeded Sony’s expectations, in a market shared with Nintendo and Microsoft.

“PS4 pre-orders … were so big that we were pinching ourselves and wondering if people were pre-ordering in more than one place, and if some of these pre-orders were real.

“We were getting numbers we never imagined, let alone seen before. But it proved to be real. How do I reconcile that? I think the world has changed since we launched PS3.”

The Sony PS4 has so far sold 5.3 million units.