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Handheld gaming is not a ‘huge market opportunity’ says Sony

Sony CEO Andrew House voiced his concerns about the potential of handheld gaming outside of Asia during the Tokyo Game Show last week, Bloomberg reports.

We have not seen that as being a huge market opportunity,” he said, specifically referring to handheld consoles’ potential outside of Asia. He admitted though that the matter was different for the Switch as its a hybrid device,” resulting in a different approach and strategy.”

He added that the success of the Switch doesn’t have an impact on Sony’s sales so far: That draws me to the conclusion that they’ve really been additive to the business in the last year or so,” House told Bloomberg. The folks at Nintendo have their strategy and that’s great. We remain focused around a highly connected gaming experience and also coupled with having a great range of other entertainment experiences so you can reach multiple people on the big screen in the household.”

Sony’s PS Vita is still selling well in Japan, with about 4,000 hardware units shifting every week, while Vita games regularly make it to the Japanese Top Ten. But outside of Asia, the Vita has been largely abandoned.

The Vita experience was that outside of Japan and Asia, there was not a huge demand,” House further said. The lifestyle shift toward the dominance of smartphones as the single key device that is always with you, was the determining factor.”

Sony moved to mobile development in early 2016 with the creation of a dedicated studio called ForwardWorks, which is doing fantastic,” House also told Bloomberg.

Without an update for the Vita, developers who create games for PS4 and Vita will stop working on Vita,”analyst at Ace Research Institute Hideki Yasuda also told Bloomberg. Then they’ll develop for the PS4 and Switch.”

About Marie Dealessandri

Marie Dealessandri is MCV’s former senior staff writer. After testing the waters of the film industry in France and being a radio host and reporter in Canada, she settled for the games industry in London in 2015. She can be found (very) occasionally tweeting @mariedeal, usually on a loop about Baldur’s Gate, Hollow Knight and the Dead Cells soundtrack.

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