According to data obtained by Joystiq, it appears as if the majority of the Sony stores in the US have dropped the price of both the 3G and Wi-Fi only models of the PlayStation Vita to $199.97, representing a $100 and $50 discount respectively.
Interestingly, the price drop does not appear to have taken place at Sony stores nationwide, or even statewide for that matter. In California the Sony stores in Costa Mesa, Glendale, Los Angeles, and Santa Clara all report the discounted price, however, the Palo Alto store is still selling the Vita for its initial $250/$300 price point. Additionally, only half of the Sony stores in Florida, Texas, and Virginia are confirmed to have lowered their Vita price tags.
Employees at the Denver, New Jersey, and Las Vegas locations all confirmed that not only has Sony decided to lower the PlayStation Vita price tag but the company has also discontinued the 3G model of the handheld. Making things even more confusing, is a Seattle employee who claimed that the markdown was temporary and would end this coming Sunday.
As it stands now, Sony’s online store is currently showing the Wi-Fi PS Vita at $250 (its original price) but they have marked down the 3G model by $50. The sale also appears to be limited to just Sony stores, as Amazon, BestBuy, and GameStop are all still selling the Vita for its original price.
On February 28th Sony officially lowered the price point for both the 3G and Wi-Fi models of the PlayStation Vita in Japan to 19,980 yen (approximately $212 US). This is down from 24,980 yen ($266 US) for the Wi-Fi model, and 29,980 yen ($319 US) for the 3G model. Sony Worldwide Studios boss Shuhei Yoshida later confirmed that the price drop was going to be limited to Japan and Western price points would remain fixed at their current levels.
So far SCEA has not made an official announcement as to what is going on with the Vita‘s price at their US Sony stores. We will keep an eye out for any additional information regarding the handheld’s price and update this post as details are announced.