Wednesday, September 7, 2016

New iPhone and PlayStation NEO day, room for one more thing?

Tech blogs will be gibbing all over themselves later today as Apple introduces a slightly better iPhone 7 and a still shit Watch 2.0. With leaks all over the place, smartphone sales now past their peak and most of the interest in the OS rather than hardware, the faux news from these events is pretty baffling, unless Apple rolls out an iBike or iCar to shake things up.

Meanwhile, Sony will try to convince gamers that a slightly less crap mid-range PC in the guise of PlayStation 4 NEO is worth picking up. That's while furiously selling the PS4 slim to the masses, and trying to convince everyone that VR is a thing, even as PC sales of the technology tank. Does Sony have the VR pricing sweetspot or is it about to blow those shiny new profits on another dud?

Anyway, almost exactly three years to the day that the PlayStation Vita 2000 (and Vita TV) came rolling around, is there room in either Sony's New York (or, more likely, the Tokyo event next week) for a wafer-thin refresh on the Vita?

Viva Vita 3000, even just a little bit?

With the Vita library now very much bargain bucket thanks to constant sales and poor retail presence, a new model for the holiday season, with even the most modest of changes and a slightly lower price tag, could be a target for the Christmas market. Pack in some bundles with child-friendly digital games, and a World of Final Fantasy bundle, and it could easily appeal to Amazon and online gift buyers.

In Japan, a tweaked model (just fix the damn WiFi) in new colours will kick off another modest upgrade cycle. And Vita can still be sold to the hardcore with a healthy big-hitting line up stretching well into next year.

vita 3000
That provides us westerners with a lifeline of translations from the likes of Idea Factory, NIS America, Xseed, PQube and so on to keep us core gamers happy. So, while western development, even crowdfunded and indie will likely dry up over 2017, there's still plenty to look forward to, if only Sony, now the company is eeking out a profit, sees any margin.

Vita memory cards provide a healthy profit for Sony, and the handheld must be sold at break even or a small profit, otherwise Sony would have given up on it. So, why not support Namco, Falcom, Tecmo and the other third parties still keen to give Vita a shot?

While primarily a hardware event, Sony will hopefully also take time to address PlayStation Plus, which is pretty much dead on Vita and PS3, a revamp or new offer is needed, otherwise a quiet discontinuation can't be far off.

1 comment:

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqDs_M2pzvw (read my comment with this)

    Catch my friend. Really apreciate your work on this blog after all this years but is time to assume the truth... Reading you for so long about new Vita models and fantasies... Were good times, always trying to believe in the impossible.

    Rest In Peace.

    Let Henkaku take the pieces to the tomb.

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