Sony seems to have majorly underestimated demand for their recently released HMZ-T1 head mounted display. Stock shortages were apparently worldwide at launch, and Sony’s US HMZ-T1 product page no longer lists 1/17/12 as the estimated ship date for new orders, instead saying “Temporarily out of stock. We will email you when your product ships”. Many of the international sites simply say that the unit is not available currently.
Interestingly, Sony has completely revamped the US HMZ-T1 product page (the old one is still hosted here, for comparison). Previously it was your typical SonyStyle product page with some basic information about specs and features. The new site is more of a micro-site experience with a lot of new graphics and several sections explaining specific features of the HMZ-T1. Quotes from both Engadget and Gizmodo reviews of the HMZ-T1 (and links to them) are also featured on the new page.
The real story here is not simply that they put up a fancy new product page. Rather, it seems that Sony now better appreciates the demand of the HMZ-T1 and is allocating their marketing resources in line with this new appreciation. You’d think that pre-order figures would have alerted them ahead of time to the greater-than-expected demand, but those were either ignored, or didn’t pick up steam until it was too late for Sony to properly scale their production.
With the page revamp, I think it’s clear that Sony realizes they have something more than a mere concept on their hands, and this is nothing but good news for current owners of the HMZ-T1 because it means the product isn’t likely to fall out of Sony’s favor (which means continued support and development). Hopefully production will catch up to orders soon so that eager customers can get their hands on this neat piece of tech. Perhaps the HMZ-T1 head mounted display even has a chance of becoming a multi-generation product rather than a one-off experiment. We’ll have to wait and see!