With the Wii U only a couple of months from launching and no sign of new systems from Nintendo’s competitors, Sony and Microsoft are looking for ways to minimise the percieved advantage that the Gamepad will give Nintendo when it releases this November. At E3 we saw talk of PS3 and Vita connectivity features, Xbox Smartglass tablet uses were announced and detailed, showing clear attempts to enter the two screen home console market and capture some of that Nintendo magic.
Sony Computer Entertainment America VP of marketing, handhelds and home consoles John Koller recently spoke openly about the Wii U launch and how Sony plans to combat it with their own hardware support. Apparently “almost all” PlayStation Vita owners are also PlayStation 3 owners, which if true would certainly put them in a good position to try and muscle in on Nintendo’s unique selling point this Christmas.
“We tell our PlayStation fans all the time that what the Wii U is offering is something that Vita and PS3 can do quite easily… [but] it’s dependent on the content. So we need to make sure the content isn’t force fed. And, to us, making sure that the gamer receives the right type of experience is what’s most important. So we’re gonna pick our spots, but that technology does certainly exist here.”
Many have pointed out that a PlayStation Vita and new Playstation 3 “Super Slim” bundled together could be fairly comparable price wise to the Wii U, and would have the added benefit of its screen being one that can be taken away and used separately from the home console unlike the Gamepad. When asked if they would be bring a bundle like this out to combat the Wii U launch, Koller said that “As we look at the lineup, there are gonna be some opportunities to do that. Whether we want to bundle the hardware together remains to be seen, retail asks for it all the time, in the meantime, you look at the Vita consumer and a very high percentage—almost all of them—own a PS3. So you see that crossover works.”
Sony seem fairly confident that that can keep the two systems separate and still stand side by side with the Wii U when it launches. What do you think? Does the fact the systems are not bundled together stop you from seeing them as a viable option for the sort of things Wii U aims to do? Is it too late for this to be a focus of the PS3? Could we see this as a key selling point of the PS4 when it is announced? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.