Sony’s online store probably received a record-breaking amount of visits yesterday after word broke out that several cameras and lenses were listed for as low as $200.
Expecting the orders to be cancelled, many people placed them anyway in hope that the company will honor the listed prices and absorb the price difference.
In a rare incident were a camera company actually met its customers’ expectations, Sony has started cancelling orders.
It seems like PayPal orders have not been cancelled so far.
Amazon was first to cancel orders after its automatic price-matching algorithms picked up on Sony’s erroneous sale and marked down its prices as well.
The following message was sent out to Amazon clients who were fast enough to order an a7R before the error was corrected:
We’re contacting you about order #XXXXXXXXXXXX. We recently discovered an error that caused the following item(s) to be displayed at an incorrect price:
Sony a7R Full-Frame Interchangeable Digital Lens Camera – Body Only
In this case, we’re unable to offer this item for the incorrectly posted price. Therefore, we’ve cancelled your order for this item, and you haven’t been charged.
At any given time, despite our best efforts, a small number of the millions of items on our site may be mispriced. We’re very sorry for any disappointment this may cause.
We value your business and hope to see you again soon.
Smashing any hope left by those who purchased cameras or lenses directly from the manufacturer’s online store, Sony started cancelling orders and sending out this email:
Your order with Sony Store has been canceled.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
If you have any questions or if you believe this cancellation was in error, please visit Sony Support or contact Sony Customer Care at 877–865–7669.
Thank you for shopping at Sony Store.
Sony Customer Care
Judging by the comments on Reddit, it appears that only orders purchased via PayPal have not been cancelled, presumably because Sony doesn’t have the shoppers’ email address and can’t contact them automatically or as quickly.
This shouldn’t raise hopes among PayPal buyers, though, as there’s a fat chance that Sony will cancel all but these orders.
With the a7R being listed for $200, the a77II DSLR + 16-50mm lens + grip combo priced at $250 and 500mm f/4 lens at just $1,298, it was a long shot that the company would follow through with the orders, but with little to lose, many decided to take their chances.
While Sony have not issued an official statement explaining what caused the multiple and extreme price cuts, their site does have such cases covered in the Terms & Conditions:
“For orders from the Website, we confirm the price of a Product as part of our order processing procedures. In the unlikely event that a price stated on a Sony Web site or direct sales materials are incorrect, then the following applies: If a Product’s correct price is lower than our stated price, we charge the lower price and ship you the Product. If a Product’s correct price is higher than our stated price, we will, at our discretion, either contact you for instructions before shipping or cancel your order and notify you of such cancellation”.
UPDATE: there goes paypal too…. because it is “out of stock”
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