Summary Box: Sony says it has sold 1.2M Vitas

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THE TOTALS: Sony says it has sold 1.2 million PlayStation Vitas worldwide through Sunday, exceeding the company’s expectations.

ABOUT THE LAUNCH: The handheld game system launched last week in North America, Latin America, Europe and elsewhere. It went on sale in December in Japan and other parts of Asia. It’s not known how many of the sales came from last week’s launch.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: The Vita launch comes at a difficult time for dedicated handheld video game machines. Many people now play games on their smartphones and tablet computers. Nintendo Co.’s 3DS handheld hasn’t sold as well as expected.