Will the Sony Vita Bring New Life to Mobile Gaming?

In Latin and Italian, the word “Vita” means “life,” and is the term given to biographies of important historical figures. Sony is attempting to bring life into its mobile gaming division with the introduction of the Vita. But in a struggling economic market already loaded with mobile gaming devices, will the Sony Vita be able to carve out a niche in the marketplace?

Established Competitor

Nintendo already has an established product, the 3DS, on the market. Although sales are sluggish at best, the price of the device has been slashed from $249.99 to $169.99, and it already boasts an extensive catalog of games. Some of the advantages of the Vita will be: the ability to play PS3 games on the device and vice-versa, more mature titles that stray from Nintendo’s kid friendly appeal, and a network powered by AT&T’s powerful connection services.

Can’t Multitask

One of the biggest advantages of owning a smartphone or tablet device is the ability to do just about anything tech related on the go. If you already own a device such as Samsung Exhibit 4G Android phone, you have access to a vast array of games as well as the ability to make calls, texts, and other phone services. Consumers might see a new device dedicated to mobile gaming as an unnecessary purchase. Apple is set to release the iPhone 5 in the middle of October which may also hinder sales.

Stigma of the PSP

Gamers might be weary about purchasing a new mobile device from Sony because of the poor performance of the PSP. The company spent a lot of money on marketing their first foray into the mobile gaming world, but consumers felt like they were greeted with a lot of hype, and not a stellar gaming experience.

Mismanaged Release Date

Another drawback for the Vita is an untimely release date set for sometime in early 2012. While the Vita will drop in Japan in early November, the European and U.S. markets won’t receive the device until after the busiest retail season of the year. According to a report by Fox News, Sony’s executive vice president Kazuo Hirai wants to make sure the hardware and software catalog is up to standards. By missing a Christmas release date, the Vita might have to rely on consumers using gift cards or making returns.

The Vita has a tough uphill battle ahead of it in the mobile gaming market. Sony needs to capitalize on their brand name and draw in its core fan base of hardcore gamers in order to make the Vita come to life.

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