The Xbox One won’t launch in Japan until 2014, months after its November 2013 launch in other territories, Microsoft Japan president and CEO Yasuyuki Higuchi confirmed to Japanese site 4Gamer (via DualShockers) at a recent press briefing in the country. Microsoft considers Japan a “tier 2 country,” and thus launching the new Xbox console there is not a priority, Higuchi said.
“For the launch of Xbox One Japan is a Tier 2 country and not a Tier 1 country, so it’ll come with the second wave, that will be delayed a little bit [compared to North America],” he said, adding that “it won’t be delayed too much from the North American release.” Another Microsoft Japan executive, Consumer & Partner Group vice president and executive officer Haruaki Kayama, reportedly asked journalists not to be too negative about the news.
Japanese gamers failed to embrace the Xbox 360 and the Xbox brand in general during the current console generation. If Microsoft has a chance of turning its fortunes in the country around, it’s not getting off to a great start by launching there months late.