Gizmondo: European street date

New handheld is 'best thing since colour TV', says some Italian bloke.

May 19 has been announced as the launch day for Gizmondo in France, Italy, Germany, Spain and the Nordic regions.

The standard Gizmondo pack will retail at €349, while the Value Pack will carry a €289 price tag. €189 will buy the Smart Adds-enabled Gizmondo which receives up to three ads per day and comes with 20 free music downloads.

Tiger Telematics boss Carl Freer said: "Gizmondo's local offices have primed each of these mainland Europe launch territories ready for a 19th May launch date and the response in each has been overwhelming."

Retailers quoted by the company are certainly forthcoming in their praise. Virgin Megastore France's console buyer described the arrival of the Gizmondo as "a real revolution", while Andreas Kniza of Germany's Karstadt AG confirmed "massive support" for the handheld.

In the Nordic regions, pre-launch campaigns are said to have exceeded expectations, with the product especially well received in southern Sweden.

But it's from Italy that Gizmondo receives its warmest welcome. Matteo di Silvia - former owner and chairman of Teleherz, the company which introduced colour TV to the country - commented: "We feel that now with Gizmondo we are leading an even greater revolution in the electronics entertainment industry by introducing a revolutionary new product to Italy.

"We know intrinsically that this system will sweep the market, as colour television did, and change forever our entertainment priorities."

Analysts predict that in twenty years' time we'll all be sitting in bus shelters going, "Remember watching the coronation on the Gizmondo?" "Ooh yes, there was only one in our street, and we all crowded round to have a look."

The Gizmondo launched in the UK on March 18 and in Ireland yesterday. The company also recently announced plans to launch flagship Gizmondo stores - like the one on London's Regent Street - in 21 cities around the world, including Paris, Barcelona, Hamburg, Stockholm and Milan.

According to untrue rumours, Sony has responded to claims that the Gizmondo is the best thing since colour TV by saying: "The PSP is the most important landmark in the history of scientific and technological development since man set foot on the moon.

"Had NASA thought of it first, the world would be a very different place today."

Nintendo did not add, "Well so what, the DS is more impressive than the miracle of childbirth."

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Ellie Gibson

Ellie Gibson

Contributor  |  elliegibson

Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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