Sony Playstation Vita Launches in 2012

Sony Playstation Vita will miss the holiday season and launch in early 2012, in the United States and Europe.

Kazuo Hirai, the man tapped to replace current Sony chief executive Howard Stringer, made the announcement in a Tokyo press conference on Thursday, according to reports.

This means that the Tokyo based, Sony, will miss out on Christmas shoppers in two markets, where the company generated more than 40 percent of its revenue last fiscal year.

The company is also facing mounting pressure after its larger games-industry rival, Nintendo Co., said last week it will slash prices of its latest 3-D handheld player by as much as 40 percent starting mid-August.

Kazuo Hiari, told reporters in Tokyo today that Sony doesn’t need to lower Vita’s price and follow competitors.

Both Sony and Nintendo are also facing increasing competition from Cupertino, California-based Apple whose iPhones and iPads are gaining popularity as gaming devices, as well as from games such as Zynga Inc.’s “FarmVille” on Facebook Inc.’s social-networking site.

The Vita, equipped with a 5-inch display and touch pads at the back, will be offered from $249 in the U.S., Sony said in June. That’s $80 more than Nintendo’s 3-D portable player after the price cut.

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