Focusing on the U.S. supply chain, Sony is holding off on the Japanese launch of the PS4 until next year.
The delay, Sony explains, is to allow more Japan-centric titles to be ready for the console's launch in its home country. Dating the PS4's release in Japan for February 22, 2014, the publisher says they're also trying to meet demand for the North American holiday season. This would offer them a healthy, three-month replenishment period between the November 15th launch in the U.S. and the launch in Japan.
Microsoft is similarly holding off on releasing their console in Japan until next year, with the November 22nd Xbox One launch targeting English-speaking territories, Spain, Germany, Italy, and France.
The move on both companies' parts feels unprecedented--in the last console generation, it would have been unheard of to not launch the new machine in Japan alongside the U.S. (or even before). Japan represents a smaller part of the market share, but to what extent are they now being seen as an outlier nation like Russia or Brazil, where publishers can de-prioritize launches until the (potentially) more lucrative Western markets are satisfied?
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