According to one of our favourite kinds of videogames celebrities – the analyst – Sony shouldn’t worry too much that their newly discounted PS3 will make people think the Vita isn’t worth $249.
Some people have raised the point that a handheld console, priced at the same figure as a home console with all the media capabilities included, might seem like it’s a little bit expensive. It seems like a valid concern to me, at least for the vast majority of the market who, let’s be honest, don’t check specification sheets and watch countless videos or read a multitude of specialist press about videogame hardware.
Price is at least one of the largest contributing factors for many consumers and there might be a psychological barrier that makes them think twice about a Vita when they could get a PS3 for the same money.
Perhaps I’m wrong though, Michael Pachter thinks I’m worrying about nothing.
I’m not sure that they are trying to sell both to the same person as alternatives to one another. People who want both will buy both. People with neither are more likely to buy a PS3, people with a console already might be more likely to buy Vita… The market for Vita is pretty small, given that it’s an expensive dedicated handheld with primarily hardcore games.
Likewise, in the series of responses given to IndustryGamers, Jesse Divnich of EEDAR said that the handhelds were more comparable to smartphones and tablets.
I don’t believe the PlayStation 3 price drop will impact the perceived value of the $249 Vita. With the growth of the tablet and smartphone market, I believe consumers are more likely to compare the $249 Vita to a $499 iPad tablet than a PlayStation 3
With Nintendo’s success upon launching the DS at a higher price point than its then-current home console, the Gamecube, perhaps they’ve got a point. Either way, I’m planning a sneaky pre-order as soon as I find a decent deal with a retailer I trust. What about you?