We have seen this happen before – a company places the wrong price tag on their product, only to have eagle-eyed customers make an order, where said company then “paid” for the price of their mistake, honoring such orders despite making a loss on the balance sheet. I am quite sure that the amount of consumer confidence that they received in return has proved to be priceless, but in the case of Sony Malaysia, protecting the balance sheet seemed to be more important.
Sony’s online store did show some PS3 consoles retailing for as low as RM79 (US$25), and for select models, those were going for free. In fact, it was shown that up to 1,000 or so PS3 units were ordered last Saturday when the error occurred, which would have resulted in a potential loss of more than RM1.1 million assuming they honored the orders. The thing is, Sony Malaysia took the other side of the moral road by apologizing for the incorrect pricing, before dropping the bomb that they will not be honoring the orders as the error was due to a “system error during unscheduled maintenance”.
I don’t think that anyone from Sony Malaysia would be committing hara-kiri over the situation, but they sure as heck would have lost some amount of sleep. Wait a minute here, chances are they won’t either, since they did not bother to man up and honor the sales agreement. I guess this just reflects the values of the company on the whole, and would this make you more averse to Sony products from now on? Who knows, they might even opt not to honour your Sony device’s warranty down the road because a “system error during unscheduled maintenance” caused the warranty’s terms and conditions to skew in your favor.