To describe the PS Vita‘s sales in Japan as “tepid” would be very generous, with the handheld unable to find any prolonged sales success. It’s been trounced in its home market by the Nintendo 3DS and even the PSP week in and week out, and the latest numbers have it hitting a new low — just 5,806 Vitas sold against 61,542 3DS units, the highest-selling hardware in the region. The PSP ranked third with 14,541 units sold. Only two PS Vita games made the top 20 in software sales for the week, with the handheld port of Street Fighter x Tekken debuting feebly at number 20.
As a result of the poor sales, Sony lowered its sales forecast for combined PS Vita and PSP sales, down from 12 million to 10 million units for the year. Combined PS3 and PS2 sales projections hold steady at 16 million. Despite an overall dip in year-over-year hardware sales, though, Sony expects to make the same amount of money due to the lowered operating costs brought forth by 10,000 layoffs by March 2013.
Looking at these sales results every week, it’s hard to pinpoint any one reason for the system’s continued struggles. Whether the issue is the PS Vita’s price is too high or the fact that PSP games and hardware are still a strong focus at Sony is hard to say, but something has to be done soon. As it stands now, the once-promising handheld has one foot in the grave less than a year after its initial release.