This has to be a major blow to Toshiba!
The scenario of not having a product on the retail shelves at Christmas is interesting. Lived through one of those...
In the late 80's I worked for RadioShack when their early PC's were hot sellers. Don't remember the exact model but it may have been the Tandy 1000SX & 1000EX. Due to unexpected sales volume on black Friday, shortages occurred and supply was scarce to non-existent all the way through to February. The big Christmas sales flyers had already been printed and mailed before Thanksgiving with the two now out of stock computers on the front cover (and at a sale price to make matters even worse).
What ensued in the stores was not pretty... people acted as if RadioShack single handedly killed Christmas. We were threatened, bribed, and even a few trucks got broken into in search of the new computers.
Finally some wise guy in Ft Worth (RadioShack HQ) came up with the genius idea of having cards printed that said "Someone has bought you a new computer- as soon as it's available- it will be delivered to you"... the card had a picture of the new computer on it. Ft Worth expected people to pay in full for the computer, and in turn we were to issue them this stupid little card to put under the tree. Well, I don't have to tell you that plan was a disaster! Lots of bad PR
for quite a long time after that. People need a box with something in it to put under the tree!
The real shame was, that by next Christmas there were plenty of new Tandy computers in the stores for sale, but the competition (IBM, Apple, and others) had stepped in and filled the demand gaps, computer sales at The Shack were never the same after that Christmas debacle.
Is Toshiba setting themselves up for the competition (Sony, Samsung) to step in? Granted, this latest delay isn't completely Toshiba's fault but you would think the QC on the first run of a brand new high-end product would have caught a major defect before the product left the country.