With its two-toned black-and-white color scheme and swooping, curvy sides, the PlayStation 5 features one of the most divisive designs in console history. This has led many gamers to dream up ways to customize the PS5's design, with one company even releasing pre-orders for aftermarket side panels...until Sony shut it down.
After Sony released a teardown of the PS5 showing side panels with simple tabs that seemed like they would be a cinch to swap out, a company that originally went by the name Plate Station put up pre-orders for add-on panels (and other accessories) in a range of colors including black, blue, red, silver, and camo for $40 a pop. Unfortunately, shortly after creating a website (which is now defunct) and announcing its PS5 accessories on Twitter, Sony got wind of Plate Station’s plan and forced the company to rebrand and cancel sales of its third-party PS5 side panels due to “patent and intellectual property issues.”
While this is sure to come as a blow for anyone hoping to customize the look of the PS5, the team behind Plate Station hasn’t totally given up hope, as the company has rebranded as Customize My Plates and pivoted to making custom console and controller skins for the PS5 instead. The obvious downside to this approach is that vinyl skins are more annoying to apply (and not quite as durable) as simply swapping in a brand new plastic panel.
That said, by using skins, PS5 owners should get more freedom to customize their consoles with more intricate designs or patterns and change up the look of other areas of the system like the PS5's glossy black midsection, which is much more difficult to remove and replace. Heck, I’m just hoping that someone actually makes the custom Bugsnax-themed PS5 of my dreams instead of just posting teaser pics on Twitter.
Either way, come the PS5's official launch on Nov. 12, even if Sony doesn’t plan on releasing its own first-party replacement panels, we’re sure to see an explosion in new PS5 skins and add-ons. And post-launch, it’s a safe bet that Sony will release a number of themed PS5 consoles similar to what we’ve seen across all the previous PlayStation generations.