Sony’ next-generation portable video game console will not launch in the U.S. until early 2012, Sony Executive Vice President Kazuo Hirai told The Associated Press on Thursday. Sony’s PlayStation Vita will become available later this year in Japan, but it will miss the all-important holiday shopping season here in the U.S. and in Europe as well. Some, such as Daiwa Securities Capital Markets analyst Koki Shiraishi, believe Sony’s sales will take a huge hit as a result. “That’s when you do half your year’s sales,” Shiraishi told the AP. “This is going to prove painful for Sony.” When it finally does launch next year, the PlayStation Vita will start at $249 for a Wi-Fi-only model and a 3G-equipped version will be available for $299.

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Zach Epstein has worked in and around ICT for more than a decade, first in marketing and business development with two private telcos, then as a writer and editor covering business news, consumer electronics and telecommunications. Zach’s work has been quoted by countless top news publications. He was also recently named one of the world's top-10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes, as well as one of Inc. Magazine's top-30 Internet of Things experts.