This page is an overview of the PlayStation Vita. It is not really a review, as a site which features the Vita exclusively, it should be quite clear about our thoughts on it!
The Playstation Vita is a true “Next Generation Portable” and Sony’s successor to the PSP. Boasting some serious power inside which easily eclipses the last generation of consoles, and boasting twice as much RAM as even the PS3 (512MB vs 256MB, although the PS3 has 256 MB just for video too, although the Vita sports another 128MB for video) the PS Vita also has a 5 inch multi capacative OLED screen, think high end mobile phone technology in qHD 960x540p, which gives you 220 pixels per inch (not quite as good as the iPhone 4), a rear touch pad, features two analogue sticks and the familiar PlayStation scheme of the shape buttons and a D-pad. Inside the device you will also find a sixaxis accelerometer and a gyroscope. It also comes in two versions, a 3G/Wifi and just Wifi.
It really is a high end mobile games product and is easily the most powerful mobile games device on the market, eclipsing even the recent iPads. With a base cost of anywhere from £180-£220 just for the unit, it certainly seems an expensive luxury, but whe you play it you will see what you are getting. Nothing on the market can do what this does. Other devices may have some other features, such as the 3DS with it’s stereoscopic 3D effect, or they might have a larger range of games, but when you look at what you are getting, the Vita really is worth every penny. it’s also very well made, it certainly feels comfortable in your hands and such is the build quality, you do feel it would survive an accidental drop or two, unlike other handhelds you may have had in the past, including the original PSP.
The PS Vita was released in December 2011 in Japan and in February 2012 in the USA and Europe, and has currently sold nearly 2m units globally since then. The majority of these sales have been in the USA and Japan, according to reports by other sites, the UK figure is around the 100,000 mark.
It uses flash based cartridges rather than the UMD media from the PSP generation and utilizing the special PS Vita memory card you can also download many games directly from the PSN store, often cheaper than you can from retailers, but this obviously requires the use of a card. The card is not supplied by default with the Vita, and many games REQUIRE a card to save data to, which is a bit cruel, a bit of a hidden cost. Especially since it is a new media card and only Sony have the cards available, and these are quite pricey, varying in size from 4GB to 32GB, and in price from £13 to £60.
The lack of the bulky UMD drive means that the Vita, although somewhat larger than the original PSP-1000 is actually lighter than it was, weighing in at 260 grams (or 279 for the 3G) wheras the PSP-1000 weighed in at 280 grams. The lack of the UMD does not mean that the Vita is not backwards compatible – you can download a large selection of PSP and PS Mini titles from the PSN store at reasonable prices. This gives the Vita a huge library of games to fill you in whilst you are waiting for the next big game.
As mentioned briefly, there is a 3G version of the Vita, and this is around £50 more expensive than the standard model, and comes with a pay as you go Vodafone card, which will give you an allowance of data usage. It also sports a GPS device inside which the Wifi model does not.
When opening the box, there isn’t a lot inside. It comes with the Vita unit, obviously, and a charger, which also functions as a USB 2.0 cable for one portion, and wall socket the other end, and six Augmented Reality cards. It is quite light on the accessories included, but that does appear to be the norm these days with technology.
Only you can say whether you think the Vita is worth it to you, chances are if you are reading this, then you either have one, or are really interested in getting one. All we can say is, if you can, you should.