Sony has announced that the production of the handheld game console PlayStation Vita has ended. The console has slowly seen its end in the last few years and during the weekend, the tech giant confirmed that it would be discontinuing the last two models of the handheld game console.
The PlayStation Vita, the successor to the PlayStation Portable (PSP), was released with tons of new features but it saw big competition during its run. The console struggled against some of the competition and also saw the surge in popularity of mobile gaming, which continues to be very strong in the industry.
The PS Vita handheld game console was released in Japan in late 2011. The device arrived to the US and Europe just a few months later. The device sold well early on in Japan, according to Strategy Analytics and other research companies.
The early success didn’t continue in Japan and other markets. Comicbook reported in late 2018 that lifetime sales of the handheld game console in Japan were 5,955,448 units. Reports say Sony has sold between 10 – 15 million units since its release seven years ago.
In comparison, the Nintendo Switch console has already passed those numbers in Japan. The Switch has been available in Japan since March 2017, which means that it took the Nintendo device less than two years to surpass those numbers.
The PlayStation has been extremely popular when it comes to consoles. All four versions of its gaming systems, the PS1, PS2, PS3 and PS4, have all done well. But the story was different on the handheld console department, especially for the Vita.
During that same time, Nintendo did have success with the DS. The popular handheld made its debut in 2004 and saw many upgrades during its run.
The PlayStation Vita also faced strong competition from the beginning. The DS was still a hot seller in many countries and many other devices started getting better and better. Smartphones and tablets became powerful enough to run graphically demanding games and applications.
Sony had made it clear that the Vita console was coming to an end. Last year, the tech giant announced that physical production of the games had come to an end. The company also announced at the time that production of the handheld game console would end in 2019.
The Vita saw some big releases from series such as Uncharted and Assassin’s Creed but Sony delivered the first bad news for the device in 2015. The company said at the time that it would stop making games for the Vita.
The Vita saw many releases even after the announcement by Sony but a percentage of them came from indie developers. There are no rumors on a new handheld game console from Sony and gaming experts believe that Sony will stay away from this department. The PS Vita had seen other bad news in recent weeks.
Sony recently announced that it would stop releasing free games for the PS3 and PS Vita as part of the PS Plus subscription. The free PS Plus games for the month of March will only be available for the PlayStation 4. The games will be available from March 5. Reports say the company is getting prepared for a PS5, which could come some time in 2020 or even earlier.
What do you think about this? Did you buy a PS Vita? If so, what was your favorite game? Let us know in the comments.