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Xbox One delayed to 2014 in selected countries, Microsoft admits

Microsoft has confirmed that it will have fewer Xbox One consoles ready for its launch date later this year than expected, and has accordingly delayed its release in selected countries until 2014.

The company's original plan was to release its next-generation games consoles in 21 countries towards the end of this year. High levels of pre-orders - significantly above those made for the last-generation Xbox 360 during the same period of its release cycle - mean that the company is now being forced to delay the release until it can get more units produced in its factories.

The result is that only 13 countries will be seeing the Xbox One this side of 2014 - but the good news is the UK has made the grade. The other countries confirmed for a pre-Christmas launch are Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Spain, the United States and New Zealand.

The countries that had been promised a 2013 launch but are now seeing the release dalyed are Belgium, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden and Switzerland. Microsoft has yet to provide a formal launch date for these countries, except to state that it will be "as soon as possible next year."

To help make up for disappointment, those who have already placed a pre-order for the console in the aforementioned countries will now receive a bonus game at no extra charge - although the company has not yet confirmed what the game will be.

With Sony's rival PlayStation 4 already sold out of its UK pre-order stock, it's clear Microsoft is doing all it can to maximise the number of Xbox One units available in its primary markets.

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