A few weeks ago Sony did a very YouTube thing: disassembling its own PlayStation 5 for the world to see. Gamers got excited about how easy it was to remove those big white covers on the PS5, and started designing their own decorative replacements. Apparently Sony doesn’t like that: the company has allegedly strong-armed a prospective seller into dropping the covers.
The owners of “CustomizeMyPlates.com” told Video Game Chronicle that Sony lawyers have instructed them not to manufacture or sell custom-colored replacements for those big white plastic panels on the PS5 body, arguing that doing so would violate Sony’s intellectual property. The company first got on Sony’s radar for its URL, formerly “PlateStation5.com,” but eventually decided to put the kaibosh on the entire product line.
CustomizeMyPlates.com is now only selling vinyl covers for the PS5 and its accessories, a product niche that’s been going strong for decades and doesn’t represent any real innovation.
Some have speculated that the easy-to-remove panels on the PS5 were intentionally designed so that Sony itself could sell replacements, perhaps a cheaper alternative to the many game-specific special editions that consoles get over their lifetime. If Sony’s hoping to shut down sales of third-party covers everywhere, it has a hard row to hoe: Chinese manufacturers and independent sellers on marketplaces like Etsy are sure to give it a shot, no matter what the lawyers say.