Sony is pulling out all stops with the launch of its PlayStation Vita device in the US market. The company has said that its publicity and advertising budget, pegged at a whooping $50 million, will be the largest advertising budget spend the company has ever spent on a single product launch in its entire history. The game was launched in the Asian markets a few weeks back and the reception has been “as anticipated”, as described by a Sony spokesperson.
The PlayStation Vita will come with a 5 inch OLED display with a quad-core processor and front and rear touch screen surfaces. The company says its strategy for the new device is more long-term than short-term and that is why it can afford to spend so much money on the launch.
More importantly, the device comes with a proprietary Operating System, something Sony says will give more control of the device from hardware to software. The company does not currently enjoy this control with its other devices that run other operating systems such as Windows and Android.
The new gaming device will however be more of a tablet because of the added non-gaming functionalities added to the device. These include Skype, Twitter and Facebook integration into the device, things many see as a way of Sony bridging the gap between the PlayStation Vita and the very popular and near-ubiquitous smart phone.
But Sony will not admit this openly as their launch tag line reads “Never Stop Playing”, and Sony explains the device is meant to extend the gaming capabilities of the PlayStation 3 to those who want to continue playing on the move. Nevertheless, the PlayStation Vita does have a lot of social appeal and this may play out either way for the company.
Sony plans to roll out software additions to the devices over time with no major OS overhaul for at least the next ten years. Meanwhile, expect a red carpet affair during the launch with glitzy celebrities, media mayhem and all the other trappings of a Hollywood-like launch.