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Yoshida plays down lackluster Vita sales in Japan with PSP sales


President of worldwide studios for Sony Computer Entertainment Shuhei Yoshida recognizes that the Vita hasn't sold very well in Japan, but he thinks it will do better in the US. Why? Because Sony's previous handheld venture, the PSP, is still "very popular" in Japan. Or something like that.

"So, the Japanese launch, you saw the sell-through numbers, you notice that we haven't been able to sell out the units that we sold in," Yoshida told VentureBeat, responding to a prompt about lessons learned for the US launch from Japanese Vita sales. "But looking very objectively at the market situation there in Japan, especially on the portable, PSP is still very popular."

Yoshida said Sony needs to communicate the Vita as a brand, not just another portable device, to potential players. Part of that is visible in Sony's marketing campaign, which includes $50 million of commercials, billboards, online banner ads, retail deals and hashtags.

"We are still seeing good sales through PSP, and we are advertising on TV, a dedicated PSP TV campaign, at the same time we are introducing Vita," Yoshida said, continuing to discuss the merits of the PSP as a children's entertainment system. He did mention one plan directly for the Vita: "At the same time, we are trying to communicate the value and new, exciting features of PS Vita to an older, mature, core gamer audience."

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