Sony Probably Won't Compete With the Switch in Mobile Gaming for the Time Being

Sony Probably Won't Compete With the Switch in Mobile Gaming for the Time Being

The Vita was cool in Asia!

Sony is content with backing away from the mobile gaming space, at least for now.

According to a Bloomberg interview with Sony's Andrew House, the head of Sony's gaming division feels that the mobile phone market has essentially put a hold on mobile gaming. Talking about the last mobile gaming device Sony released, the PS Vita, House said, "The Vita experience was that outside of Japan and Asia, there was not a huge demand. The lifestyle shift toward the dominance of smartphones as the single key device that is always with you, was the determining factor."

Nintendo Switch

Likewise, Sony is quick to point out that the Nintendo Switch, which has seen plenty of success since launching in March, is not a true mobile console. "The Nintendo device is a hybrid device and that's a different approach and strategy."

So will Sony abandon mobile for hybrids? Nope. According to the interview Sony's current strategy involves delivering more products for home consoles along with VR and non-gaming entertainment like original TV content and music.

For any of you still holding out for a Vita successor might continue waiting as Hideki Yasuda, an analyst at Ace Research Institute suggests that developers who can work on both PS4 and Vita content will simply drop Vita development. "Then they'll develop for the PS4 and Switch," he said.

Since its launch, it's not uncommon to hear critics and players refer to the Switch as the "Vita 2" for its ability to attract the type of games you'd normally see on the Vita. However, given the Switch's ability to become a home console, as well as the strength of both its hardware and software over the Vita (Did the Vita ever have a game of the year contender like Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild?) the Vita 2 moniker is seeming less and less accurate.

However, analysts and developers still express hesitation for the Switch, questioning whether it has lasting potential like Pokemon Co. head Tsunekazu Ishiharu suggested earlier this year.

For the time being, Sony is keen to stay out of the mobile gaming sphere instead opting to pursue the PS4 (which is still going strong) and smartphones. They'll also still probably espouse the PS4 and Switch as two compatible systems philosophy for some time.

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Matt Kim

News Editor

Matt Kim is a former freelance writer who's covered video games and digital media. He likes video games as spectacle and is easily distracted by bright lights or clever bits of dialogue. He also once wrote about personal finance, but that's neither here nor there.

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