The handheld-with-a-crank Playdate consoles have been delayed into 2022, the team at Panic has announced.
An update to fans broke the news last night, revealing the reasoning behind the delay is twofold. First off, the team discovered an issue with the first five thousand units of the Playdate’s batteries. This issue has resulted in the team changing battery suppliers, sending those initial consoles back to replace them. However, this does mean the first batch of consoles (which sold out in just 17 minutes) originally scheduled for Late 2021 will now not arrive until Early 2022.
The second reason is that the team has also fallen victim to the ongoing global chip shortage effecting the electronics world. “Covid-19 caused an ever-cascading set of worldwide supply chain failures that are leading to many, many electronic parts being simply… gone.”
Frustratingly, this has resulted in the CPU the team intended to use for the machines not being available for two years. Rather than make their fans wait, the team are working on a revision of the system to use similar but more widely available parts. The team reassure owners that they won’t notice a functional difference with the new internal hardware. But it will mean they can still ship out the rest of the orders for 2022.
The team are still trying to work on other part shortages too, so while they do even those who ordered a Playdate after the first run may be waiting a little longer than expected. However, all pre-orders will retain their place in the queue, and the team will keep them posted.
The Playdate is the second console to suffer delays this week due to hardware sourcing issues. Earlier this week, Valve announced they would be delaying the launch of the Steam Deck by two months.
Your continued Playdate enthusiasm and patience — as we try to ship hardware during an intense time — is really keeping us going. Thank you.
(FYI, it’ll take a few hours for all the emails to deliver. And if you haven’t pre-ordered, read the update here: https://t.co/aCSzNA3XMN)
— Playdate (@playdate) November 11, 2021