The pre-conference buzz around 3DS was for a release in Japan late this year, with Nintendo's share price jumping hugely at a rumour the machine would launch in October for ¥18,000 (around $215/£136/€157), though that news turned out to be the Mario edition DSi XL.
It turns out the original plan was to launch the machine in 2010, but Nintendo realised it would never be able to produce enough consoles in time. Considering this situation has happened in the past with the Wii console, Nintendo is obviously looking to alter its tactics for its next hardware launch.
That explains the release date, but what about the pricing? It turns out Nintendo's route to the price included, amongst other factors, evaluating the reaction to the machine's unveiling at E3; Nintendo clearly knew it was onto a winner judging from the excitement created by the console, some critics even labelling it "absolutely incredible."
We await news of North American and European release information with bated breath.