The bad news is if all your holiday gifts for 2021 revolve around Panic’s upcoming Playdate console. After Valve’s announcement yesterday that it is The Steam Deck console has been delayed two months after the new year, Panic also revealed that he would not get the first 10,000 beforeordered Playdate units by end of 2021 as he had hoped, and now aims to start 2022.
However, while Valve cited problems in the global supply chain and the inability to procure components needed to produce Steam Deck consoles as the reason this handheld device was delayed in 2022, Panic experienced a completely different problem, as detailed in a shared post with those who have already pre-ordered Playdate and expect delivery in the next two months.
Thanks to the Playdate’s monochrome reflective screen, which does not require backlighting, this handheld device has an incredible battery life compared to other devices we carry all day with LCD and OLED screens. But the first 5,000 Playdate units that arrived at the company’s warehouse in California not only had a disappointing battery life – much less than what Panic promised – but many units had batteries installed that were completely discharged and could not be recharged at all.
The unfortunate solution was to send all 5,000 first Playdate units back to Malaysia to upgrade with new batteries from a completely different vendor. This is not only an expensive solution to the problem for Panic, but also means that the company will miss its expected delivery in late 2021 for the first 10,000 Playdate pre-orders, with “beginning in 2022.” an equally accurate estimate of when it will arrive now.
The global shortage of ships also affects Panic’s ability to build Playdates. The CPU the handheld currently uses was essentially ordered back about two years ago, so the company had to revise the Playdate mainboard to use a similar and more affordable CPU, which, he promises, won’t have any impact on the handheld’s gameplay or performance. However, this will have an effect on those who have pre-orders over the limit of 50,000 units. They will not be delivered until 2023 at the earliest, which is understandably frustrating for both the company and the customers.
As for the second long-awaited and much-delayed handheld device that was finally due to arrive in late 2021? There is no word on how it is produced Analog pocket as hit by the global supply chain crisis, but let’s all keep our fingers crossed that he won’t experience the same fate as Playdate and Steam Deck.
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