PS3 European Launch Delayed - Update

PS3 European Launch Delayed - Update PS3 European Launch Delayed - Update

According to the Herald Tribune Sony's U.S. and Japan PlayStation 3 launch will be a modest affair with a total of 500,000 units for both territories.

The newspaper reports that although Sony has vowed to deliver the 6 million units it promised by March 2007, it will have to reduce the launch quantities dramatically. The U.S. is likely to see 400,000 units by 17 November, 2006 while Japan will have to make do with 100,000 on 11 November. If he story is correct, Sony is taking a risk and may alienate its home fans who will have to queue for hours and against the odds in order to get their hands on a PS3 console.

The shortages are a result of a production problem involving the Blu-Ray component of the PS3. Sony's Ken Kutaragi said, We decided to focus on the Japanese and U.S. markets, I am so sorry not to be able to answer to all the expectations.

Mr. Kutaragi also made it clear that Sony will not make its initial 4 million units by the end of 2006 target. Instead, he commented, the number of units shipped in 2006 is likely to fall to 2 million.

Mr. Kutaragi refused to reveal the exact European launch date for PS3, stating that it is likely to be in early March.

Sony has officially confirmed that the European launch of the PS3 will be delayed to March 2007 due, mainly, to Blu-ray shortages.

Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) announced that it would revise the launch date of its PlayStation 3 in the PAL territories of Europe, Russia, Middle East, Africa and Australasia from 17th November 2006, as previously announced to March 2007.

Launch dates for Japan and North America will remain the same, which are November 11th and November 17th respectively.

The revision of the launch date in the SCEE territories is caused by the delay in the mass production schedule of the blue laser diode within the Sony Group, thus affecting the timely procurement of key components to be utilised in PLAYSTATION 3.

The previously announced PS 3 shipment forecast of 6 million units globally within the fiscal year ending 2007 is not changed.

Microsoft's Xbox UK boss Neil Thompson, was eager to comment on the PS3 delay to GamesIndustry claiming, we know how challenging it is to pull off a global launch, so it's not surprising that Sony has backed away from their previously announced launch plan, due to the unproven technology they are trying to pack in to their console. This seems to be the first victory for HD-DVD in its battle with Sony's Blu-Ray format.