Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Last orders at the bar, new "Value" Pack hitting Japan

A few more ad clicks folks (polite hint) and I will be getting me one of these as my backup Vita, the blue one for sure! At just under 20,000 yen, in black or aqua blue, they come with only a 16GB memory card and no game.

That represents no more "value" than the existing models on Japanese shelves and no price cut, which might tempt a few more buyers. That's weird as you would think Sony's mature console would be cheap as chips to build now.

However, getting component partners to produce such old processors and low-res screens probably costs Sony a premium - if only that mid-life upgrade had ever appeared, ironically it could be a lot cheaper! Also keeping a low-yield factory to make around 16,000 Vita units a month is inefficient, compared to Nintendo's Switch factory churning out boxes at warp speed.
Will Japan flock to buy these? With photos of Tokyo store shelves flooded with second-hand models, I can't see much of a sales bump as there's no new colour model. Sony has also stopped making new LE models, unless I've missed something. Which all makes this pretty much a low-rent, last-ditch effort to flog some more units before that production line goes dark forever!

The new models go on sale on the 22nd November, apparently as limited quantities, which means Sony is either rebadging unsold stock or is running low on components. They're pretty much identical to Spring 2017's Starter Kits, showing how out of ideas Sony is.

Sony's press release plaintively states that "SIEJA will continue to develop appealing products and strongly promote further dissemination and expansion of the PS Vita platform for more users." which is crap!

The other question is how long Sony will keep its game card production lines running? The likes of Limited Run and others depend on these for products, presumably as a less complex operation, these can run for a few years, as long as there is enough demand.

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