PS Vita the "iPod of handheld gaming"

3 min read

PS vita

It seems like almost everyone has an iPhone, iPod or iPad these days. I actually had one of the early iPods back in the day. That thing was a brick, but I loved it. Now it seems that maybe I would love the Vita in the same way, if we believe PlayStation UK’s Managing Director, Fergal Gara.

Speaking with VG247, Gara explained that they’d hoped for higher sales of the Vita, but that the market is complicated:

In all honesty, higher sales would have been what we had hoped for. The market Vita entered was more complicated than it was when the console was originally thought about and designed. Games on tablets and phones have changed the marketplace and people can’t carry too many things around at one time.

The truth is that the number of people that want the core experience [that Vita offers] is not as big as the number that simply want any sort of game available on the move and, because the likes of a tablet and smart phone are so multifunctional in their use, they will always be very appealing.

Really, I think the reason it hasn’t sold more is that it comes down to people thinking: ‘Do I need it as well as these other things that are taking my money?

So, the Vita has fallen into the “yet another gadget” pigeon hole. Gara goes on to say that the link with the PS4 was planned during Vita development so that their architectures would be compatible. While the Vita and PS4 can stand alone, they can also work together to form a common gaming ecosystem. Just as purchases of iPods helped to make iTunes a major player in the music industry, it appears the the Vita will also be a game changer (I hate that expression, but oh the irony):

Compared to PS3, Vita has had a higher percentage of games bought digitally since it was first launched. It’s interesting and it demonstrates how many people look at it as the iPod of handheld gaming. More Vita games are still consumed through physical game cards than they are through digital, but things are increasingly moving the other way. Could be that in future physical games becomes the side we do without.

I certainly wouldn’t mind owning a PS Vita, mainly to play awesome indie games on handheld. It seems like a cool platform, and would certainly help me make greater use of my PS Plus subscription. I already have a Wii U, and the PS Vita is outselling that floundering console, so maybe I’ll get the PS Vita next. Or maybe I’ll just buy a shiny new iPad Air instead.

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Last Updated: January 14, 2014

Zoe Hawkins

Wielding my lasso of truth, I am the combination of nerd passion and grammar nazi. I delve into all things awesome and geek-tastic. I believe people should stop defining themselves and just enjoy playing games, so let’s get on with it!

  • Brian Murphy

    “Or maybe I’ll just buy a shiny new iPad Air instead.”

    I have nothing to say or feel about that.

    • General JJ Raven (John)

      That line also made me cringe. Except if the iPad Air is an apple computer being thrown from a plane. 🙂
      I’ve always found handhelds to be pretty cool, but I’ve never had enough of a reason to buy one tbh.

  • ElimiNathan

    I’ve been playing on my Vita every night lately, the more I use it the more I like it

  • Devourer of Small Bunnies

    Im waiting (maybe) on a bundled Vita with the 4. Since I sold my first one, I can honestly say I dont miss it hey.

    • Her Highness the Hipster

      i also want that bundle! that would be an insta-buy for me

      • Devourer of Small Bunnies

        Inorite? Specially if it was bundled with 4 remotes and a few couch co-op games. I’d be all over that thing like a cabinet minister on KFC

  • Umar digs KOS-MOS

    I love my Vita. I make sweet sweet love to it every night. Softly caress that back touch pad like oh yeah!

    • General JJ Raven (John)

      Your children will be both functional and dysfunctional.

  • Admiral Chief in Vegas

    i’Ve got iNothing and i’M happy about iT

  • Rock789

    The Vita is tempting me more and more… Particularly with it’s cross-platform functionality with the PS4. I’ve gone from “Not really interested” to now looking at it in stores and checking prices, seeing what games I can find… Me thinks it may be getting closer for me. Who knows…

  • TiMsTeR1033

    always wanted a vita or 3ds the idea of gaming in bed or at work is great! The question is, which one..

    • Her Highness the Hipster

      i LOVE my 3DSXL. and you can pick them up for pretty cheap

  • fred

    Guacamelee (free on ps + )kept me busy at work in December on the Vita , it was awesome. Remote play of ps4 titles has also been flawless on every title i’ve tried so far.

  • Wyzak

    3DS XL is the way to go.

    • fred

      I don’t know , me personally i’m struggling to find games worth playing on my 3ds. Like the console , but the software selection is not for me.(pokemon , Zelda etc.)

      • Wyzak

        I’ve bought a ton of new games on my console but I just haven’t gotten around to them thanks to the awesomeness of Mario Kart 7 and Pokemon X and Y. New Super Mario Bros II is also an amazing game.

      • Her Highness the Hipster

        Fire Emblem is fantastic – worth getting the 3DS just to play that…

  • MakeItLegal

    I loved my vita ( sold it today along with my ps3 ) I found that the games in typical brick and mortar places ie Bt games , way to expensive for such short experiences … The console it self is nothing shy of hot , but it’s just not worth it for me when I look at steam sales and the like the games are overpriced not to mention those memeory cards

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