The PS4 Slim has gone on sale weeks before it was due to be announced after stock was secured from abroad, senior sources have told MCV.
Stock of the new model came from the UAE, which was holding units of the updated hardware ahead of its expected reveal next week. Sony has recently invested significantly in the Middle East as it looks to grow its presence in emerging territories.
A small quantity of units made its way to the UK and was then distributed amongst indie stores and eBay sellers, before making its way onto shelves at second-hand retail specialist CEX.
Sony would not comment on the leak, although it has yet to officially announce the hardware. The firm has a press conference planned for September 7th.
You have to feel sorry for PlayStation, because it's all descended into an absolute farce,” said one leading retail buyer.
Another added: We didn't even realise this was coming out until it was available to buy online. We've seen early selling before, but nothing quite like this.”