Sony CEO admits PSP marketing 'confused' customers, PS Vita to refocus on gaming

The PlayStation Portable is months away from becoming the second best handheld in Sony's stable, but that doesn't mean the company is done learning a thing or two from its long and storied history. In fact, in a recent chat with Official PlayStation Magazine, Sony CEO and president Jim Ryan admitted the PSP's multi-media marketing strategy was a little too confusing for consumers, and that it intends to avoid similar missteps by swinging the focus back to gaming for the PlayStation Vita.

“I think with PSP we tried to position it as a rather broad multimedia device. We talked a lot in the early days of PSP about its video playback functionality its use as a music device and a host of other multimedia functionality that it had,” noted Ryan, adding, “that perhaps ended up confusing consumers, and they weren't quite sure what the device was really all about. So this time the Vita does all of that stuff that we talked about on PSP, and it does it a lot better.


Ryan emphasized that while the PS Vita will feature an abundance of multimedia bells and whistles, Sony intends to pitch it first and foremost as a gaming device, adding, "It has been developed from the ground up as a gaming device. What it does best is play games."

Elsewhere in his interview, Ryan said consumers were also disenchanted by the release of PS2 and PS3 ports. Understanding this, Sony is pledging to make every game that hits the PS Vita a wholly unique experience.

Ryan's latest pro-gaming sentiments mirror those he gave at GamesCom, giving Sony fans some hope the PS Vita will have the support and philosophy behind to outperform the PSP. We'll see if Sony sticks with its gaming focus once it launches February 22.

Matt Bradford wrote news and features here at GamesRadar+ until 2016. Since then he's gone on to work with the Guinness World Records, acting as writer and researcher for the annual Gamer's Edition series of books, and has worked as an editor, technical writer, and voice actor. Matt is now a freelance journalist and editor, generating copy across a multitude of industries.