Sony is shutting down PlayStation Mobile after having given users a warning to this effect in March. Vita owners will no longer be able to buy games from the service and there will be a gradual reduction in services offered. In-app purchases will be available only until 10 September and re-downloads will also not be available after that date. Needless to say, people will be able to use the PS Vita to play the games taken from PlayStation Mobile long after that date, but without any updates or support from the manufacturer, these games will eventually just wither away on the branch.
Many owners of PlayStation Vita and PlayStation TV have enabled a certain option within Settings to ensure that they can keep playing downloaded games for as long as possible. People who have activated PlayStation Mobile within PlayStation Network would still be able to access their games even after the shutdown of the service. However, this will not apply to certain PlayStation Mobile games they had purchased earlier. Furthermore, the games will not transfer to any other devices.
PlayStation Mobile was a fairly good attempt from Sony to match the range of independent games available for iOS and Android devices. Launched in 2012, this service gave independent video game developers a great chance to get their games a wide audience by featuring them on the PlayStation Network (PSN) without going through the hassles that the traditional publishing model posed. The PSN approval process is simply too tough and restrictive, as a result of which many video game developers preferred to avoid it.
All that developers had to do was pay a listing fee in order for Sony to distribute their games. This was an efficient and effective method (for the developers and not for Sony) to get access to Sony?s devices such as PlayStation TV and PlayStation Vita. These games would also be available on certain Android devices approved by Sony.
The PlayStation Mobile experiment hasn?t worked out very well for Sony which is why it?s pulling the plug on it. The digital distribution business model has changed considerably over the past couple of years. Furthermore, there are issues of rights management that make it difficult to distribute games through this channel.
Interestingly, the service has hosted quite a few exciting video games in the two short years it has been in operation. Tokyo Jungle Mobile was a very popular cult classic game available on this platform and so was Adventure Bar Labyrinth. However, there is no reason for people to despair about losing their favourite games released on PlayStation Mobile. Games such as Lemmings Touch, Aqua Kitty and Switch Galaxy to name a few, will now be made available on the main PSN storefront.
Video gamers have been picking up a few of these games over the past couple of months for fear that they would be lost forever, especially the ones that have become indie cult classics. Besides, they are far less expensive than the AAA titles.