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Sony CEO: Vita sales top 1.8 million worldwide, 'games must be strengthened'

"This is a very important product indeed for us," Kaz Hirai says

Sony sold 1.8 million Vita units worldwide between the handheld's December 17 launch in Japan and the end of the company's financial year on March 31, 2012.

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Speaking during an earnings call, Sony president and CEO Kaz Hirai said he expects the system to sell ten million units during the current business year, but admitted that software support for the platform must be stronger if the firm's to achieve its goals.

"The last year [ended March 31], 1.8 million units for US, Japan, Asia and Europe [were sold]. And as a starting phase, I think it was a good start," Hirai said (via Gamasutra).

Vita sales stood at 1.2 million as of February 26, so the system sold around 600,000 units in the following month.

Hirai continued: "For a game platform, like Vita, the software is the key to success -- how good the software is, that is the key to business success. We have to reinforce the software area in order to improve the business, that is the basic line.

"Vis-a-vis Vita, at this moment, there is no decline or lack of motivation as a portable platform. This is a very important product indeed for us, and therefore we still have a very high motivation to develop this further. There is no change.

"Software and services must be strengthened," Hirai reiterated. "In other words, the collaborative approach is very important, so is third-party. And from first-party studios, the titles will be presented one after the other, so please look at them and give your evaluation based on them."

Earlier today Sony said that its Consumer Products and Services division - which houses its PlayStation, TV, video, digital imaging, PC and mobile businesses - suffered an operating loss of 229.8 billion yen (£1.78b) in the financial year ended March 31, 2012 as PS3, PSP and PS2 sales all declined.

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