Playdate delays to 2022 amid scramble to revise the entire handheld console

Enlarge / The Playdate’s shipping box, modified to reflect today’s news.

The global chip shortage has put a serious pinch on upcoming portable gaming device production this week. Barely a day after Valve announced that its upcoming handheld PC would be delayed “two months,” the quirky, indie-minded Playdate console, initially slated to arrive by the end of 2021, followed suit on Thursday.

In the case of this yellow, cranky Game Boy-like system, its producers at Panic have opted to divulge practically everything leading to its system being delayed into “early 2022″—and orders beyond the first 20,000 getting pushed back further.

In a lengthy newsletter sent to Playdate preorder customers, Panic began by detailing a confusing hardware issue that its team found in its first batch of 5,000 completed systems, all seemingly ready to ship to customers by the end of 2021: a busted battery. “We found a number of units with batteries so drained, Playdate wouldn’t power on at all—and couldn’t be charged,” Panic writes.

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