|Sony: 'We have to do a better job in promoting the Vita'|
Executive Kazuo Hirai admitted sales are "on the low end" of the company's expectations. On top of that, Sony, for a third time, has revised their estimated sales forecast for the Vita. In today's Q3 earnings report, Sony announced that they now expect to sell a combined 7 million PSP and Vita devices by March 31, 2013, down from the late November forecast of 10 million combined.
I firmly believe it's too early to call the system a flop, but sitting around and waiting for it to pick up steam isn't going to cut it anymore. Even the 3DS required a price cut before it began selling to the masses. The point is, something must be done and Sony recognizes this, admitting today that they need "to do a better job in promoting the PlayStation Vita."
"Gaming business software is the name of the game. So as a fundamental measure, we are putting all -- a lot of resources, not just first party, but also asking third parties to put out more attractive software," Sony's Chief Financial Officer Masaru Kato acknowledged. To be fair, the Vita has had its fair share of quality titles, Gravity Rush and Assassin's Creed 3: Liberation to name a few. But it has also had a good amount of flops: Black Ops: Declassified and Resistance: Burning Skies come to mind.
The good thing is, looking ahead, the Vita has several promising looking titles coming up. In September of this year we have Killzone: Mercenary and sometime in 2013 we'll see the launch of Tearaway, a charming adventure game that sees you interact with a papercraft world. Of course, it can't just be up to Sony to support the Vita, third party developers have to join in as well. Sony is seeing the same thing with the Vita as Nintendo is with the Wii U. Until they get a substantial user base, it will be tough to attract third party developers.
Of course, it doesn't just come down to games for the Vita. As Kato said, "That's just the basics."
"The other thing, well, marketing, pricing of the product, et cetera, I cannot talk about pricing of this platform, but those are the things that we are looking into to improve our profitability in the mobile handheld gaming business."