Sony is retiring
the PlayStation Portable
(PSP) in Japan after nine and a half years of sale in the country, effectively signaling the oncoming end of the console's life. Shipments of the handheld game console will cease in Japan later this month, with the company instead continuing to push for sales of its successor, the PlayStation Vita
The Associated Press reports
Sony is attempting to draw owners of the console to the Vita by offering discounts on Vita downloads, as well as cut-price Vita bundles on PSP trade-ins for a limited time, though it is unclear if the same offer will be extended to other regions. Shipments of the console ended in North America this January, with shipments to Europe also set to end sometime later this year.
Sony PlayStation Portable
It is unclear how much damage to the PSP, and in turn the Vita, mobile gaming on smartphones has caused, but it is likely to be significant. In its lifetime, Sony has managed to sell approximately 80 million PSPs, with 76 million reported sales as of two years ago. In comparison, Apple sold 94.7 million iPhones in the first two quarters of the current financial year alone.