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Analyst: Sony May Need to Cut the PS Vita's Price Drastically

Posted by Sammy Barker

All aboard

Despite the PlayStation Vita showing serious signs of life during Black Friday week, industry analyst Billy Pidgeon has admitted that Sony may need to “drastically” slash the price of the device in order to resurrect its fortunes. The pundit pointed to Nintendo’s 3DS price drop, adding that if “the [system's] install base remains below five million units, the platform will not be viable for publishers”.

Pidgeon continued that the company should also consider lowering the cost of the console’s memory cards. “The proprietary memory cards for Vita are prohibitively expensive,” he said. “There should be more downloadable software, including inexpensive or free games, and these must be higher quality than popular iOS and Android games. It would in fact be helpful if the best and most popular smartphone and tablet games were also available for download to Vita.”

In a refreshing twist, though, the analyst admitted that there could be a bright future ahead for the Vita – assuming the platform holder keeps the device well supplied with quality software. “Vita sales are improving, but could be much stronger,” he concluded. “The software library is improving – there are some very good third-party exclusives like Persona 4 Golden and Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, and there are some very good downloadable titles like Sound Shapes and Escape Plan – extending PlayStation Plus subscriptions to Vita also helps to add value.”

Yesterday, publisher Activision claimed that the Vita “faces challenges” from the emerging mobile market. Sadly, these quotes are not going to go away until the platform’s situation dramatically improves.


User Comments (16)



Kayoss said:

I think its about time. Maybe before christmas because its one of the biggest holiday that is celebrated almost in every country. This is a great oppurtunity to give people an options on gift ideas. Same goes for the Memory card. Bundles are great, but only fans and hardcore gamers knows the benefits of bundles. For casual gamers they only see the price regardless of what the bundle have to offer. Sony should have learn from the 3DS mistakes... but they didnt, the difference Nintendo fixed the problem almost within 6 months. NOw it seems that there are not enough 3DS to sell to people.



Paranoimia said:

"The proprietary memory cards for Vita are prohibitively expensive" - No they're not. They're not cheap, but they're not prohibitively expensive. Proper gaming never has been, and never will be, a cheap hobby. I suspect if they did drop the price of the memory cards, they'd have to raise the actual Vita price to a break-even level.

"There should be more downloadable software, including inexpensive or free games, and these must be higher quality than popular iOS and Android games." - Those two things are mutually exclusive. Android/iOS games are cheap, throw-away titles which are almost universally dire. Quality games cost money; if you want bigger/better, you have to expect to pay more.

Vita is already sold at a loss. So this guy not only expects Sony to take a far bigger hit on the hardware, but also practically give away high quality games? In what parallel universe is that going to happen? He does know how the console model works, right? Sell hardware at a loss, make money on the games. You could get cheap games, but you'll be paying far more - not less - for the hardware.

The price of the Vita is fine, in fact it's excellent for what you get. Until they get the manufacturing costs down, dropping the price of Vita too low would probably swallow any profit they may be making from game sales, and that really would be a disaster for them.



JavierYHL said:

instead of lowering the price and lose money for sony i think they should used the money to moneyhat monster fantasy or GTA...its all bout the games...



Zowolffo said:

This is what I have been saying for awhile, that they need to do drastic price cuts.. Sure sales may be increasing, but not at a fast enough rate..



Zowolffo said:

I'm thinking that the Vita might me Sony's last handheld console, as it will be very difficult in the coming years for any dedicated handheld video game console to compete against mobile gaming, even Ninty will have a hard time..



get2sammyb said:

@Paranoimia I must admit the quote about the iOS/Android games seemed completely idealistic, bordering on unfair. He's essentially saying: "If Sony wants Vita to compete, they need to make games that are not only far seperior to those available on mobile devices, but they also need to give them away for free."

That's completely unreasonable.



Dambuster said:

The vita needs to get a bigger user base, the more people than own it, the more games will get developed for it. The more games = more people buying it ... I know alot of people who class them selfs as "core" gamers who say they will buy a vita if the memory cards were cheaper. So reduce the mem prices and more people would buy it.
I dont want the playstation store full of IOS style games, I want something unique to vita, I want must have games (which there are loads of). Playstation plus has brought in loads of new vita owners, if memory cards were cheaper more people would buy just for PS+ content. If sony were to unlock remote play for all ps3 games the thing would rocket. PLEASE sony help the vita, listen to what people want.



FuzzyYellowBalls said:

Damn nice machine. Certainly the prettiest of the handhelds. I'm just amazed how vibrant the screen is. Zen Pinball is so hard to put down on the Vita. I wish I could play all my PSN titles on the Vita... That would be a HUGE selling point!
Hate those memory card prices though. That is the main reason most of my friends don't have one.
Only true Sony fanboys will argue for the price of them... and in the process, show their ignorance.
32gb for $100? You can buy an external TB hard drive for less than that. Not really for portable gaming though.



Gamer83 said:

A lot of what this guy is saying is stuff some of us have been posting on here for months.



aditya99ars said:

This is what i will do :
1. Make ps vita capable on playing ps2 games (R2/R3/L2/L3 buttons used touch pad)
2. Release av or mini hmdi cable to play ps vita games on tv/screen
3. Reduced memory card price or let third party make a similar one or even better, released cable adaptor to used sd type memory card
4. Introduced new games using stylus like cooking mama etc to attracts teenage girls gamers, maybe pink or purple ps vita would help
5. Sell it as a bundle with ps3, just to show how great playstation is compare to wiii üü



NathanUC said:

All Vita needs is time. It has amazing hardware, a solid library, and growing quality of games.

If I could ask for anything, I'd want more cross controller, bundle in 8gb memory sticks instead of 4gb, and more love for the first party games.



rjejr said:

Ya think? (Forgot that one yesterday.) This article could have been written about 10 months ago.

I think the biggest reason for Sony to drop the price now is that it has been out long enough w/o a price drop that there are probably a large number of people on the sidelines waiting to buy it who aren't going to until the price drops. Blame Steve Jobs, Nintendo, or consumer electronics in general, prices drop, people wait.

The Wii U came out 2 weeks ago and I'm waiting for a price drop. Judging by all the Basic units I've seen in stores I probably won't have to wait long. (Or Pikmin 3, which is apparently releasing on the same timetable as The Last Guardian.)



Gemuarto said:

Vita needs price drop and more cool games for 15$. Unfinished Swan, Datura, Jorney, Papo & Yo, Sound Shapes, Escape Plan. Love those games. And Vita needs some epic RPG like Dragon's Dogma or Skyrim. I think, everyone would like to buy game like Skyrim on Vita - big world on small Vita. Vita has very cool sleep mode, so there iwill be no problem to stop and start any big game on the go. And if you can make cool co-op mode in that big game, then you have epic win. Yeah, we have Soul Sacrifice, but i don't think that there will be enough exploring. It's more about fighting with big monsters and making better equipment. Hell, i hate developers in our days.



XyVoX said:

My thoughts about this im 39yrs old been into gaming and owned most of the consoles/handhelds (still own actually) since about 8 yrs old, pretty much always owned most of the machines of a generation to get the best of all worlds, now since launch i always wanted a Vita however for me and i reckon MANY others its far to expensive and the price of the memory cards is just PLAIN ridiculous when you can get a 64gb micro SDXC for £40 and Sony are charging people similar money for a 32gb which now only costs around £15 for a micro SD (clearly this was never going to work) and it hasn't so how comes all and sundry know about this and Sony doesn't, simple GREED and now they are suffering the consequences of this ridiculous business model, Personally i hope they turn it around like they did with the PS3 as the Vita is an awesome machine but from the outside to a general consumer the price is to high and the memory cards are just taking the ?iss Sony wants to push the digital content revolution with the Vita but makes it virtually impossible to do so. Sony time to change i think. PS SONY whoever's idea it was to make a proprietary memory card for the VITA and then price it the way they did NEEDS firing immediately because this has greatly contributed to the relative demise of the VITA and cost you a fortune in the process.

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