Playdate, the portable mini-console customized by having a crank, delayed its release date until early 2022. Panic, the team in charge of this innovative product, has explained in a statement the reasons for this change in plans, which are due to problems derived from excessive battery consumption in the first remittances. The goal was to start global distribution later this year.
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The first batch of Playdate has not passed quality controls
As we can read in the statement (Playdate Owner’s Update #1), sent via email to buyers of the device, Panic has been met with an unpleasant surprise upon receiving the first 5,000 units of Playdate at its offices in California, United States: the batteries had an autonomy well below that estimated by the manufacturer. This translates into the immediate suspension of the distribution plans, as the North American team considers that these are not the conditions:
“We were soon concerned that some [Playdate] they didn’t give us the battery life we expected. The Playdate battery is designed to last a long time and to always be ready, even if it is not used for a while. But it was not the case: in fact, we found several units with the batteries so drained that the Playdate did not turn on at all, and could not be charged. That is the worst scenario of the drums ”.
An expensive decision to put quality and customer satisfaction first
The positive? According to Panic, the positive is that they have realized this inconvenience before to make shipments, no after. The decision has been clear (and expensive): replace all existing batteries with new ones from a different supplier.
Although they describe the situation as “frustrating”, they had no choice but to ensure the quality of Playdate and the trust of the buyers who have made it possible for the project to go ahead. Defective units have been returned to Malaysia; The new ones, meanwhile, have just arrived at the California offices, so they are already working to get shipments back into operation, only it will no longer be possible to do so by the end of 2021, but early 2022. “We have already received the new batteries from the new supplier, and they look really impressive: they are exactly what we expected, even better than the old ones.”
Source | Playdate Owner’s Update # 1