Sony's upcoming portable game player, the PlayStation Vita, could be on store shelves October 28, a report claims.
According to gaming publication IGN, a reader sent in a flier from Blockbuster in the U.K. that lists the PlayStation Vita as launching on October 28. The flier shows the Wi-Fi-only version retailing for 229.99 pounds ($378.37) and the 3G-capable version at 279.99 pounds ($460.61).
The Vita is arguably one of the most anticipated industry launches this year. The device, which will replace the ailing PlayStation Portable, comes with a 5-inch multitouch OLED screen, dual joysticks, and both front and rear touchpads. The portable also comes with front and rear cameras for so-called augmented reality integration. According to Sony, the Vita's graphical prowess will easily overshadow its predecessor.
At the E3 gaming expo in June, Sony said it will launch the Wi-Fi version in the U.S. for $249 and the 3G model for $299. At the time, the company would only say that the Vita will be available for the holiday-shopping season.
There's no telling whether Blockbuster's release schedule is accurate, since Sony hasn't confirmed a date. And even if it is, Sony has already said that it will offer the Vita in phases, indicating that the U.K. might not have the same launch day as the U.S.
Regardless of when it launches, the Vita may be a much-needed jolt for the portable-gaming market. Sony's PSP sales are dwindling, and the Nintendo 3DS, which was expected to help carry Nintendo's portable business over the next several years, has been languishing on store shelves.
Last week, Nintendo announced that it will cut the price of its newest portable device, which allows people to play games in 3D without the need for special glasses, to $169.99. The device launched earlier this year for $249.99.
According to data from Nintendo's first fiscal quarter, it sold 710,000 3DS units worldwide during the three-month period that ended June 30. In the U.S., it sold just 110,000 3DS units. In a statement last week, Nintendo reassured investors that the price cut would "create momentum for Nintendo 3DS and accelerate its market penetration toward the year-end sales season."
But by year's end, Nintendo's 3DS will be facing off with the Vita, and it should be interesting to see which device will attract more customers.
Sony did not immediately respond to CNET's request for comment on the Vita launch date.