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Sony won't cut price on beleaguered PS Vita in 2012
Sony won't cut price on beleaguered PS Vita in 2012
August 16, 2012 | By Eric Caoili

Despite floundering sales for PS Vita -- and a drastically reduced forecast for the company's handhelds this fiscal year -- Sony remains determined to not lower the portable's price in the near future.

Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studio president Shuhei Yoshida has said it's too early to discount the 8-month-old system this year, according to Eurogamer. He added, though, that the platform holder's engineers are working to reduce manufacturing costs for PS Vita.

Earlier this month, PS Vita's struggles forced Sony to lower sales projections for its portables this fiscal year (ending March 2013) by a quarter -- it now expects to sell only 12 million PSP and PS Vita units, instead of 16 million.

While Yoshida acknowledged that the hardware's pricing ($250 for the cheapest model) has kept some customers away, he reiterated that PS Vita's biggest challenge is providing consumers with compelling software. Sony sought to address that problem by announcing a few new PS Vita titles at Gamescom this week.

None of those announcements for PS Vita exclusives, though, were for third-party published games. Yoshida has previously admitted that the company has had a more difficult time than it expected getting support from external publishers.

Last year, rival portable Nintendo 3DS appeared to be in a similar rut, with few big titles available and many consumers complaining about its $250 pricing. Nintendo responded with a dramatic price cut just six months after launching the system, and 3DS hardware sales have improved considerably since.

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k s
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A price cut on the vita (and its exorbitantly overpriced memory cards) is the only hope the vita has, sony your arrogance is astounding.

Kellam Templeton-Smith
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Nah, a better business model and better marketing would solve its woes. It's not a bad hardware platform/not unreasonably priced, it's just struggling with near identical issues to what the PS3 faced for its first few years.

Ian Nancarrow
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@Kellam - A better marketing strategy? You mean like playing nuts... outside?

Merc Hoffner
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Rock and a hard place. Dang.

I think there's an unmeasured zeitgeist over acceptable console launch prices: basically consoles should be $300 and under, and handhelds should be $150 and under. One would expect these to gradually rise with inflation, but this is somewhat counterbalanced by the effects of the recession. And it has to hit these prices for the real deal - not the so called ''tard packs'. Nintendo was way off with 3DS, as popular as their line is, and it's still only approaching the winning territory now. MS thought they could push the boundaries with the 360 - they couldn't. Sony was even worse on PS3. Sony's probably really stuck here - ordinarily they'd loss lead even harder to pack in those OLEDs, parrallel processors and inputs at the consumer's magical numbers, but the stakes are higher and they're still trying to paddle up the financial waterfall.

This all speaks volumes about the Wii-U - Nintendo better get it $300 or under (or adapt quickly) or it just won't work no matter how appealing or good value it may or may not be. Perhaps this will end up as great validation for not pushing the boundaries on silicon and concentrating on more affordable enhancements to our experiences instead. MS and Sony better take note.

Keith Thomson
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I agree with Sony that a price drop isn't really a good idea at this point. After Call of Duty, Killzone, and Assassin's Creed Liberation are released would be a good time to consider it if the sales haven't picked up. The open question is still if the 3DS sales picked up because of the price drop, or because around the same time a bunch of software people really wanted came out.

Thomas Baltzer
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The question is who wants to pay for a handheld that's equal to or even above current console prices in order to play B-level games they could play better versions of on their cheaper consoles?

john stark
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Vitas pricetag is slowly creepin towards reasonable regions. The machine is still awesome and u get a lot of (hardware-) Bang for your buck. The major problem still is the lack of games.

As long as there is no stronger and wider lineup of games, Vita wont generate more gravity towards consumers.

Lowering the price could generate a rather negative image of the Vita for consumers, it could appear like a sellout or damage Vita reception in several ways.

Nintendo showed last year how a stronger Software lineup paired with a price reduction can create sustainble momentum and change reception of a product.

I bet Sony will time their maneuvers alike.

Michael Wenk
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Compelling software? What on earth would they make that would make me buy one at 249$, when I can play fun games on my 180$ ipod touch? Sorry, there's no value here. Same with the 3DS, they must lower the price to <200$ and provide decent software, or they're dead.

Merc Hoffner
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The ipod touch now starts at $200 for the useless 8GB model. Seen as I can't even fit my regular music on it I see no value there, bumping up the minimum spend to $300. $300 for cramped gaming and no buttons and a mess of an ecosystem? I'll use it for text twist thankyouverymuch, and use my 3DS for gaming I enjoy rather than gaming to fill the spare minutes.