Sony backtracks on PS3, PS Vita store shut downs

Back in March, Sony revealed its plans to shut down the digital PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita storefronts this summer. The announcement received a lot of pushback from gamers, and today, Sony announced that it's making an about-face – the PS3 and PS Vita stores won't be shutting down this summer as originally announced, and will instead stay online so users can continue to purchase games and other media for those platforms.

In a PlayStation Blog post published just a few minutes ago, Sony Interactive Entertainment president and CEO Jim Ryan indicated that the decision to close these stores was the wrong call. "Recently, we notified players that PlayStation Store for PS3 and PS Vita devices was planned to end this summer," Ryan wrote. "Upon further reflection, however, it's clear that we made the wrong decision here. So today I'm happy to say that we will be keeping the PlayStation Store operational for PS3 and PS Vita devices. PSP commerce functionality will retire on July 2, 2021 as planned."

Originally, Sony planned to end support for digital purchases on PlayStation 3 on July 2nd and for PS Vita on August 27th. On those dates, digital sales of all content would cease, though Sony assured that previously-purchased games and media would still be accessible and downloadable even after the PS3's and PS Vita's stores shut down.

"When we initially came to the decision to end purchasing support for PS3 and PS Vita, it was born out of a number of factors, including commerce support challenges for older devices and the ability for us to focus more of our resources on newer devices where a majority of our gamers are playing on," Ryan continued. "We see now that many of you are incredibly passionate about being able to continue purchasing classic games on PS3 and PS Vita for the foreseeable future, so I'm glad we were able to find a solution to continue operations."

Ryan doesn't give a new date for when these stores might shut down, suggesting that the PS3 and PS Vita stores will be accessible for some time to come. We'll let you know if Sony shares more specifics in the future, but for now, it looks like PS3 and PS Vita users don't have to worry about their stores vanishing anytime soon.