Posted on December 30, 2011, Phil Hornshaw Vita Sales Dropped 78 Percent During Christmas Week in Japan
Sales of Sony’s new handheld, the Playstation Vita, dropped sharply in only the second week of the device’s availability in Japan.
According to sales data from Media Create and translated by NeoGAF, Vita sales went from an estimated 324,859 in the week of its launch to 72,479 during the Christmas week, just one week later — a loss of nearly 78 percent. Meanwhile, the Nintendo 3DS outsold the Vita, as did its predecessor, the Sony PSP.
There are lots of things that might be to blame for the apparent failure of the Vita. Many people have been pointing toward the rise of smartphone and tablet games as having a harsh effect on the handheld market, and Vita owners have been having a lot of problems with the device. If I had to guess, however, I’d go with price: The Vita costs 24,980 Yen (about $320) for the Wi-Fi only version, and the Wi-Fi/3G version goes for 29,980 Yen (about $385). That’s just frakkin’ expensive, when you get right down to it, especially when you’re going up against the 3DS, the price of which Nintendo already slashed when it failed to sell well at launch.
The Vita will have a much more reasonable price tag when it hits U.S. shores next year — $249 for Wi-Fi only, $299 for Wi-Fi/3G. Until then, we’ll have to see how Sony handles the bad news at home, and whether it’s going to start slashing prices the way Nintendo did.
Via Venture Beat.