2019 will be the last year that the PlayStation Vita is manufactured in Japan, according to Sony Interactive Entertainment senior VP Hiroyuki Oda. In an interview with Famitsu during the Tokyo Game Show (courtesy Gematsu’s translation), Oda mentioned the future of the gaming device, and noted that the company will not be making a new portable gaming console, as of yet.
“Currently, we do not have any plans regarding a new handheld device,” Oda said. “In Japan, we will manufacture PlayStation Vita until 2019. From there, shipping will end.”
Since its launch in 2011, the PS Vita failed to sell as many units as its predecessor, the PlayStation Portable (PSP). To date, the PS Vita has sold about 16 million units, compared to the PSP’s 80 million, according to Engadget. While part of the decline can be attributed to the lightened demand as mobile gaming options replace traditional handheld gaming consoles, it is of note that the PS Vita can’t compare to the demand for the Nintendo Switch. Since its release last spring, Nintendo reports over 19 million units sold.
The signs have been around for a bit that Sony’s cutting ties with its portable handheld. Last month, the PlayStation Vita version of “Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night” was cancelled, just a few months after Sony confirmed it will be ending production of physical cartridges for the PS Vita in Europe and North America by the end of 2018’s fiscal year.
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While it doesn’t seem we will be getting a replacement for the Vita anytime soon, PlayStation CEO John Kodera did express that the next PlayStation console may integrate with handheld devices earlier this summer.
“In my opinion, rather than separating portable gaming from consoles, it’s necessary to continue thinking of [portable gaming] as one method to deliver more gaming experiences and exploring what our customers want from portable,” Kodera said. “We want to think about many options.”