It looks like PS3, PS Vita and PSP players will have to start making preparations for the future. According to sources from The Gamer, the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable (PSP) stores will be closed down on 2 July 2021, while the PlayStation Vita store will remain open only until 27 August 2021.
After those aforementioned dates, players will no longer be able to purchase digital copies of games or DLC on the PS3, PSP, and PS Vita. The PSP launched in 2005 with 81 million units sold to date, while the PS3 launched in 2006 with 87 million units sold to date. On the other hand, the PS Vita released in 2011 with only 10 to 15 million lifetime units sold.
If this happens, it’s unclear if players will still be able to download and play their existing digital games. However, one thing will surely happen; the price of physical PS3, PSP and PS Vita games will increase ten-fold, especially if they become the only way for gamers to play games on these consoles.
The death of these digital stores will definitely increase the fear for those already afraid of adopting and relying on digital storefronts for games. The digital-only titles that were previously exclusive to those consoles might soon be gone forever, with the only options being going physical or emulation.
For now, Sony has yet to officially announce or confirm this report, so take all of this with a grain of salt for now. It’s unlikely that Sony will do so anytime soon, considering that even the PlayStation 5 is currently so hard to get these days.