Currently, we do not have any plans regarding a new handheld device. In Japan, we will manufacture the PlayStation Vita until 2019. From there, shipping will end.
It’s a bit of a sad tale, really. Sony’s handheld systems were generally critically well-received and simply adored by many. However, for a variety of reasons they seemed to never hit the heights of Nintendo’s cheaper (and in many ways inferior) handhelds.
What may come as of a bit of a surprise then is that despite production ending, that doesn’t mean Sony has given up on the Vita completely. Evidence of this, as explained in Ethan Gach’s article for Kotaku, is Sony’s determination of curbing any hacking and/or jailbreaking attempts on the system, including releasing a firmware update as recently as this past Monday (after a new exploit was discovered). Some may consider it a bit odd for Sony to take such a hard stance on a now-dead system. However, there is something cool in thinking that Sony still values their IP so strongly and perhaps even gives us a glimmer of hope that they haven’t given up on the idea of handhelds forever.