Sony’s John Koller On Vita Price Cut This Holiday, “It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint”

PSLS: In a recent interview, John Koller, Vice President of Marketing for home consoles and handhelds at Sony, was asked the perennial question of whether or not the PlayStation Vita would be seeing a price cut soon.

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GribbleGrunger2154d ago

No matter how many times Sony say this and reiterate the 10 year lifecycle, people will still comment on PS branded consoles from a 5 year perspective (which is why they're always wrong). One day, maybe, the penny will drop.

miyamoto2153d ago

The PSOne, PS2, PSP, & PS3 have track records of enduring & finishing that marathon proving Sony haters wrong.

And these PlayStations are still being played today.

Its been the same principles, plan & course since the PSOne.

After 2 attempts Nintendo had to give up, sidestep, leave the core gamer, take on the little kids & they call it a "win".

Even a giant billionaire like Micro$oft after 2 attempts wasn't able to stop them.

Just like they say: Slow and steady wins the race.


darthv722153d ago

man that phrase is so used out of context. First of all you cant win a race if you are slow and steady. the point of a race is who can finish first in the quickest amount of time.

We have no idea what kind of race these consoles are in let alone in a race at all. the slow and steady approach only assures you will finish. it does not guarantee placement.

Regardless of the "marathon or sprint" you still have to finish before the other guy if you want to win.

Oh and nintendo never left the core gamer. nintendo has always been there for the core gamer from the original nes to the current gen. Peoples perceptions change as well as their tastes.

If you want to talk about giving up you can look at console companies like Atari, coleco, Mattel, NEC, SNK, Sega, Panasonic, etc.

All of which had an idea to create something different in the respects of expanding entertainment beyond the mindless blips and boops of the pong dot bouncing back and fourth.

some succeeded and others did not. nintendo never left the core. the core just forgot what gaming was about...Entertainment. Which is the middle name of NES.

BitbyDeath2153d ago

You can win a race going slow and steady.
IE if it were a physical race the fast and careless would likely trip up at some point as opposed to the slow and steady who would gradually overtake due to not screwing up in the middle of it.

ronin4life2153d ago (Edited 2153d ago )

In my opinion, the ten year life cycle doesn't mean much if your competitor replicates the same effect but with their new systems that sell well from the start instead of poorly at the gate and gradually better through life.

I mean, if the PS3 catches up to the Wii in 3 years... Who cares? The wiiu is(in this theoretical situation) kicking the brand new ps4s ass and making far more money for Nintendo than the ps3/ps4 are combined for Sony.

That, and (if things occur as they are setting up to with history repeating itself) the only reason the legacy console still sells is the gutting of BC in the newest system and the lack of games at launch.

A new system should sell well through its whole life and should be a good value this entire time. When Sony whips out the ten year line, they are admitting to making their systems below value and saying that buyers will have to wait for that value to become better. That's not good business and is anti consumer.

miyamoto2153d ago (Edited 2153d ago )

Thanks for the arguments ronin & darthv

@ darthv

you disappoint me

"We have no idea what kind of race these consoles are in let alone in a race at all."

We have no idea?

Maybe only you.

Straight from Miyamoto's mouth they had to change their strategy with Wii in order to survive & not risk another N64 & Gamecube scenario. Emperor Yamauchi's pride just can not put up with a third defeat. Nintendo just can't compete on Sony's level or race.

So they have to run another kind of race, the little league, a cheap race with the kids & casuals.

But Nintendo is jealous of the race for the Big Boys are still running now, because what they made with Wii has proven to be still not enough to keep them on the black.

So for the third time Nintendo is attempting to go head to head with Sony(PS3 ftm) again with the Wii U.

This is where things get very interesting because they will be competing on the same level, the same race.

I like the 50/50 balance of kiddie & mature games Wii U is offering compared to PS3 - a proposition Sony can't be arsed to do as they will mostly prioritize mature games.

" Oh and nintendo never left the core gamer. nintendo has always been there for the core gamer from the original nes to the current gen. Peoples perceptions change as well as their tastes.

some succeeded and others did not. nintendo never left the core. the core just forgot what gaming was about...Entertainment. Which is the middle name of NES."

Dude, those are your perception, your opinion versus hard documented facts:

"Nintendo president admits mistake in abandoning core audience for casual gamers"
Read more:

Straight from Mr.Iwata's mouth. Even he disagrees with you & you have so many bubbles here on N4G? A flaw in the system?

@ ronin

"if the PS3 catches up to the Wii in 3 years...Who cares?"

I don't care but I am sure Sony does.

They do this for their own purposes & goals. It made them money in the past they have decisive reasons why they are doing it again & again.

"The wiiu is(in this theoretical situation) kicking the brand new ps4s ass and making far more money for Nintendo than the ps3/ps4 are combined for Sony. "

In your imagination?
Wii U & PS4 aren't even out yet. LOL

How young are you people?

If front loading is such a great business strategy tell me why is Nintendo is in the red after baziillions of Wii's & DS?

"That's not good business and is anti(Nintendo)consumer."


@ Chris Buffa 1044

Its not just about graphics but gameplay controls as well.
The PS Vita uses the same quad core ARM graphics chip as the iPad 3 & 4 but 1.5 X the RAM.
What makes you think it will look shitty or under powered or dated on a 5" OLED screen after 5 yrs?

Delusion to the max!

well said!

@ ronin4life
Whether you like it or not you can not force developers to make kiddie games no matter how well they sell. Making games is not just about money only but also artistic creativity.
stop the sell out mentality already.

Man that was long.... XD

darthv722153d ago

just think of the term race and how it could relate to console gaming. Simply put, it cant.

There is no finish line unless one sees fit to say, here's the finish line and we made it first.

We have been in a perpetual marathon (if you will) for over 30 years. The baton has been passed from one to the other and in some cases competitors have dropped out.

Maybe that is the best way to describe the console gaming world. Yet calling it a race when we have no defined point of finish....come on man.

As to the point of sony and their 10 year plan. I commend them for wanting to be so supportive. They do also know that the continued support past a certain point is counter productive. Meaning that if people continue to buy the old and run down, they wont buy the new and improved. Or at least, not as quickly as the company would like.

They support their previous base because they dont know when to say enough is enough and essentially make people notice they have something newer and better.

sony is following Nintendo who in turn was following Atari. I think it is the 2600 that holds the record for the longest run of product support by the parent company. Sony could surpass it but they have to be asking themselves...why?

People move on and so does gaming.

mochachino2154d ago

Vita sales are abysmal, sure it may be a marathon but if devs think Vita won't be able to even finish the race they'll stop making games for it.

Small user base = small profits, if any.

G20WLY2153d ago

This is exactly what the industry has been lacking; strategic advice from a bespectacled chimp XD

Joking aside, it may not feel like it, but the ‘fanboys’ mantra is true; it’s “too soon” to expect an official price drop.

Make no mistake; Sony will have sales figure thresholds in mind. If sales fall short (in their view, not ours) once the first holiday season is over with, they may then move to plan B and drop the price – but no one can bank on it at this stage.

mochachino2153d ago

....and Sony dropped the price today

Guess the Sony agrees with this bespectacled chimp.

G20WLY2153d ago

:P You're right. They hunted down your comments in a panic, hoping for your words of wisdom to deliver them from their turmoil. You da chimp!

Hang on; did you tell them to do this via a temporary promotion? And to deliver the news via some random website rather than a press release?

You did? Oh. Then I stand corrected and bow to your four-eyed, simian superiority! lol

GreenRanger2153d ago (Edited 2153d ago )

“It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint”
Well it's a sprint to everyone else, and when they have crossed the finish line; you'll still be deciding what color socks to wear for the "marathon."
If Sony want the Vita to be a success, they will have to make some serious changes.
The Vita needs a price cut--plain and simple.
When a parent decides what to buy for his/her kids for Christmas; one thing and one thing only will matter to them--the price.
You could explain to a parent for the rest of your life what the Vita can and can't do, but they won't care because the price tag is all they're going to see, and that's why they'll choose the 3DS with it's attractive price tag.
Not because of what the 3DS can do or what games it has, it's because it leaves more money in the parents' pocket afterwards.
Don't get me wrong here - to me, the Vita is the greatest handheld ever, i just wish that Sony put a bit more effort into it.
Less price = more sales.
More sales = more Vita owners.
More Vita owners = more dev support which means more games.
Lose money on the hardware and get it back on the software.
If i can understand that; why can't Sony, especially since all the online stores have to slash the price of the Vita to sell it.
(I'm about to get killed)

forevercloud30002153d ago

I agree with you but you have to understand, Sony can't afford to take losses on the Vita, not after taking an astronomical one on the PS3. They are still trying to make THAT money back. From this year forward Sony is concentrating on profits. They have to figure out how to give customers what they want without bleeding money at the same time.

The only reason Vita appears to be doing bad is because of Media propaganda shoveling the idea that Smart Devices have taken over the industry, when if fact they are something different entirely. Do the userbases over lap? Sure, but they don't completely coincide with each other. Vita is doing fine as far as Sony is concerned. Vita is making money on every one sold, regardless of how slowly it is selling. Once the first fiscal year is over (April) then they will slash price to compete with 3DS, which its highly unlikely that NIN will find it necessary or even possible to slash price again in order to compete with Vita.

They are already the underdog in this battle so no need to try and make big splashes in order to gain lead. It makes more sense for them to not drop price until it is financially viable, and once they do the flood gates should open.

SandWitch2153d ago

Let's say that PS VITA breaks even at 250 USD. So 50 USD price cut per item will result in 50 mil USD losses per million units sold. If PS VITA sells 15 million units a year with a cut price then PlayStation division will lose 0.75 billion per year by selling Vita. Do you know how many years it will take to regain such losses?

In my opinion first they would better invest money in making superb games and advertising. Price cuts can come later.

People buy 600 USD iPhones and iPads every two years and there's no problem with that. But when it comes to handhelds 250 USD for 7-year investment becomes too expensive.

mochachino2153d ago

iPhones and iPads have so much more functionality than Vita ever will.

SandWitch2153d ago

I'm not talking about iPhads as a competition to Vita, I'm talking about spending money on electronic devices.

MrGunny942153d ago

The Vita will have the same fate as the PSP, around it's middle age it will see games coming to it, just take a look at the example of God of War or MGS games over the PSP, let's see how it goes in the future

Just expect good titles around July-December 2013

ronin4life2153d ago

Yeah, this is what I'm thinking.

Though I would say not to expect good title *announcements* until that point, for if games were coming then we would know of a few by now.

Dlacy13g2153d ago

I agree its not a sprint but a marathon...the problem for the Vita is they started the race later, and slower than their competition and if they don't pick up the pace soon it wont matter what they do long term as the race will be over. Vita needs to do something to at least keep pace with the competition at the moment. As is, they are just falling further and further behind.

mcstorm2153d ago

I have to agree. I have a PSV and it is an amazing little console and games like resistance LBP and UCGB are 3 of the best hand held games I ever played but there biggest issue is the lack of game where it matters in the hand held market.

Nintendo have the right mix of games from Mario Kart to nintendogs.

Sony really needs to start marketing the PSV as a handheld for all not for the core.

Sales of the PSV are worse than the 3DS in its worst time of its sales and now the 3DS has a price drop and the XL its selling faster than the DS did.

I don't think Sony need to drop the price of the consoles but include a memory card with the device as this is what makes the console price seem steep.

Anon19742153d ago

"Vita needs to do something to at least keep pace with the competition at the moment."

I don't agree with this statement at all. Sony is clearly targeting a different market from the market the 3DS is going after, and even though the PSP didn't come close to matching DS sales, the PSP found it's audience and ended up moving over 70 million units.

Sony doesn't get a bonus for matching their competition's numbers. They don't get paid by where they place on the charts. They get paid by units and software sold, regardless of what their competition does so saying "They have to keep pace with the 3DS" is just false. What the Vita sells in comparison to the 3DS is irrelevant. It's like saying Porshe needs to keep pace with the Honda Civic. They both make cars but obviously they're geared towards different markets.

Few here seem to recognize that within the games industry, while there is certainly overlap there are distinctive markets there as well. At the end of the day as long as they make money and have a decent return on their investment, what on earth does it matter what anyone else sells?

ronin4life2153d ago

You are right, except in one aspect; software support. Devs and publishers at this point will.choose the system with the higher install base and higher monthly sales to make their games for. Less games means fewer sales which means fewer games... in an ongoing cycle.

Then their is the question of wether they are even making money, with the big boss saying the expect the vita to be profitable into 2014 while many deny then taking a loss per system. If they are taking a loss, that makes the software situation mentioned above even more difficult to remedy and makes your point of making money mute, as they are losing money. Fewer software licenses mean less income from that as well.

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