Nintendo takes a battering over late 3DS

Nintendo's share price fell by 10 per cent in Osaka following the firm's confession yesterday that its forthcoming 3DS gaming handset would be delayed.

The Japanese gaming giant had been expected to release the 3D device by December 2010 in order maximise profit from Christmas sales.

But President Satoru Iwata said yesterday the company had pushed back the release of the 3DS until February because of concerns over production. It is thought the device won't make it outside Japan before April.

The drop wiped around 270 billion Yen off the company's market capitalisation amid concerns that Nintendo is not acting fast enough to counteract the growing threat of rival platforms like the iPhone, the iPod Touch and Android smartphones. The dip wiped out any gains the company had made over the past 12 months.

Nintendo also warned that it expects its profits to dip by more than 50 per cent from $2.4 billion to $1.08 billion, a fall explained by the fact that the Japanese Yen is stronger than usual and sales of DS and Wii consoles are starting to suffer from the combined effect of the recession and competition from Microsoft and Sony.

Sales for the full year are expected to fall from 1.4 trillion yen last year to 1.1 trillion yen (£8.3billion).