Last month, Panic said that the Playdate, its tiny gaming handheld with a crank, will finally be available for pre-order in July, but did not reveal the actual date. Now, however, it has. The company just announced that you’ll be able to pre-order the Playdate for $179 on July 29th at 1pm ET.
Additionally, the Playdate Cover, a purple protective cover for the handheld, will also be available for pre-order for $29. If you’re going to get both, it makes more sense to just get the Playdate and Cover bundle, which is priced at $199. As for the recently announced Playdate Stereo Dock, however, that isn’t ready for pre-orders just yet as it’s still in development.
According to a press release, Panic said that the first batch of Playdate units, which should be around 20,000, will start shipping by the end of this year. After selling this initial allotment, it will then ship subsequent orders in 2022. The company also wanted to assure customers that the Playdate will never “sell out;” you’ll just have to wait in line, as the production is adjusted based on demand.
Pre-orders will require payment upfront, but Panic says it can be cancelled at any time for a full refund. Orders are limited to two units per person. The Playdate will ship initially to the following countries — the US, UK, Canada, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. It’s also looking into selling the devices in Malaysia, where the factory is located (if you’re in Malaysia, you can fill out this form so Panic can keep you posted). International shipping costs will include any duties or taxes.
If you still can’t get enough Playdate, Panic also announced that it’s debuting a new Playdate-focused podcast next week that will give you a lot more background and information about the little handheld gaming console. While you’re waiting that, you can check out our initial preview of the Playdate here.