Sony will not be making a follow up to the PlayStation Vita, as the president of the company has confirmed that they are no longer in the handheld business. The handheld gaming market has traditionally been dominated by Nintendo, with its Game Boy and DS lines selling millions of units around the globe, but Sony once had incredible success with its own portable ventures.
In 2004, Sony released the PlayStation Portable to the market, which would go on to sell over eighty million units and become the tenth best-selling system of all time. The PlayStation Portable was followed by the PlayStation Vita in 2011, but this system would never reach the heights of its predecessor and only sold around fifteen million units around the world. Sony stopped producing PlayStation Vitas in 2018 and there has been no word of any other handheld PlayStation systems entering development.
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It has now been confirmed that Sony is out of the handheld market. Game Informer spoke to several key figures from Sony as part of the 25th-anniversary celebrations for the original PlayStation, including Sony CEO & president Jim Ryan. When talking about the PlayStation Vita, Ryan confirmed that Sony was no longer in the handheld gaming business.
“PlayStation Vita was brilliant in many ways, and the actual gaming experience was great, but clearly it’s a business that we’re no longer in now.”
The writing was on the wall for the PlayStation Vita for a long time, as Nintendo kept revitalizing its handheld outsings with first-party exclusives, while Sony seemingly abandoned their own handheld in order to focus on the PlayStation 4. The only time Sony shows attention to the PlayStation Vita is to kill homebrew support for the system. This isn’t to say that the PlayStation Vita wasn’t worthy of attention, as it had impressive hardware for the time, but the lack of exclusives is what killed the system.
It makes sense for Sony to want to focus on its home console ventures, especially as PlayStation is the best-selling home console brand 0f all time. The success of the Nintendo Switch led some to believe that Sony would attempt a similar hybrid home/handheld idea with the PlayStation 5, but the information that has been revealed about the console so far suggests that it will stay in the home. It would be risky for Sony to enter the handheld market again, especially as a new system would also be competing with the mobile market, so it might be for the best for the company to focus on things like virtual reality and the upcoming release of the PlayStation 5 in 2020.
Source: Game Informer
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