ony may be forced to postpone the release of its new PlayStation portable, codenamed NGP, until next year due to production disruptions resulting from the tsunami and earthquake that hit Japan in March. This may be good news for the platform's developers, allowing them more time to flesh out their titles, but will also give other portable systems a bigger window to entrench themselves in the minds of consumers.
When Sony initially announced the NGP in January, it was planning a release in time for this year's holiday shopping season in multiple regions, Jack Tretton, president of Sony Computer Entertainment of America, told Bloomberg. Tretton said one of the three main regions—Europe, the US, and Asia—may still receive the NGP by the end of the year, but he declined to say which one.
A report released by Nomura Securities last month showed Sony was not in good shape following the disasters in Japan. Production at seven different plants has been suspended or curtailed, including ones that make semiconductor lasers and DVD players.
Meanwhile, the Nintendo 3DS sold 800,000 units in its first month in Asia, and is off to at least an easy jogging start. Delaying the NGP into next year gives both the 3DS and iOS platform devices a solid eight or nine months before the NGP will pose any real threat.