The PlayStation Vita is a handheld console developed and marketed by Sony Computer Entertainment. It was first announced at the PlayStation meeting in January 2011, by President and Group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Kazuo Hirai. But at that time, it was codenamed “NGP” (Next Generation Portable). Further details like official name and price were both announced at Sony’s 2011 E3 press conference. 

So what does Vita mean? Vita means life, and Sony is confident that the PlayStation Vita will be the first product that truly blurs those lines between entertainment and your real life, empowering you to play, interact and connect like never before. 

The features alone are cutting edge. Two analog sticks that give you dualshock like control of games, A stunning Multi touch 5 inch OLED (Organic Light Emitting diode) Screen, front and rear touchpads, sixaxis motion sensing technology and of

The Stunning Playstation Vita

course my favorite feature, front and rear cameras allowing for augmented reality experiences, never before

seen, completely blurring the lines between reality and interactive entertainment. 

The PlayStation Vita is available in two models: a Wi-Fi model, and a 3G Wi-Fi model. This will allow everything from social networking to location base gaming that help you find, and meet friends for brand new experiences. Now of course, having such an impressive set of network features and ambitions requires the nation’s fastest mobile broadband network. Sony announced that they would be partnering with AT&T as the exclusive carrier for PlayStation Vita in the United States. Customers with an AT&T service plan will also have free access to more than 24,000 AT&T Wi-Fi hotspots nationwide. 

PlayStation Vita offers a truly unique social experience and there are few key reasons why I say that. With a feature they’re calling “Party”; users in the same Game room on PlayStation Vita can voice chat live over headsets or the built-in microphone, no matter where they are, or what game they’re playing. And it’s a perfect way to stay in touch with your friends, and chat during gameplay from wherever you might be. 

Another critical step forward is a social connection tool for PlayStation Vita that they’re calling “Near”. Near allows you to connect and play with others around you, recommend content to them, compare trophies and a variety of other social connection tools for the PlayStation Network. Both Party and Near will power the connected experience for PlayStation Vita. 

Social networking and community elements are a critical component for PlayStation Vita. This is the best proof that with PlayStation Vita, our content experiences and network, the whole world is in Play. The PlayStation Vita was first released in Japan on the 17th of December, 2011. It sold 325,000 in its first 48 hours of release. It was finally released in North American and the UK on the 22nd of February, 2012. 

With a price tag of $249, the PlayStation Vita is very affordable. This product introduces elements like a dual touchpad, and OLED screen, and dual cameras that provide an augmented reality experience to allow you to play with every aspect of your real life. And connecting with your everyday life, and the world around you is a critical component, to the development and to the DNA of this product.

The PlayStation Vita is basically the most powerful handheld console ever made. It really puts its competition (Nintendo’s 3DS) to shame. I fully recommend it, and at $249, it’s the same price as the PS3!!! Instead of using the XrossMediaBar as the PlayStation Vita’s GUI (Graphical User Interface), Sony decided to use something different. It’s called the “Live Area”. 

Actually, I must say that I prefer the “Live Area” over the PS3’S and PSP’S XrossMediaBar. I like it because it’s very easy to get used to, and it’s much easier to navigate. If you want, you can use the touchscreen or the buttons to move around. It’s all up to you. You can even change the appearance of the Live Area. If you press the PlayStation button, all the applications open will appear in a folder like design. You can also choose wallpaper from your photos. The PlayStation Vita also allows you to perform multi-tasking.  

While you’re playing a game, you can listen to music saved on your memory card. You can also take screenshots too. What I love about the PlayStation Vita is not just the lineup of impressive/blockbuster games coming, but the way you play them. Sony has this motto called “Play the way you want”. For example, this game called “Uncharted: Golden Abyss”. This game utilizes all of the PlayStation Vita’s features/capabilities. E.g. I can use the dual analog sticks to move and change the camera, and also when climbing either a rope or tree, I have three options to get the Protagonist from point A to point B. I can either use the touchscreen to highlight the path I want the protagonist to take, I can either drag across the rear touchpad or I can just use the mainstream way, the analog sticks. 

When in a gun battle, I can use either the front or rear camera to point my gun at the enemy. So basically, augmented reality means to transform the real world into the game. There’s an application for the PlayStation Vita called “Remote Play”. Remote Play allows you to use your PlayStation Vita system as a controller for your PS3, it can also allow you to play certain PS3 games on your PlayStation Vita syst 

Consumers have been complaining that the memory cards were quite expensive. But in my humble opinion, they’re quite affordable. The 4GB starts at $19.99, the 8GB starts at $29.99, and the 16GB starts at $59.99 and finally the 32GB starts at $99.99. I recommend the 16GB. Unless you’re going to buy your games digitally via the PlayStation Network, you’ll have no problem with the storage capacity.  

The PlayStation Vita also has internal R.A.M storage (Random Access Memory) which is about 512 Megabytes. The 512 Megabytes is broken down into two kinds of R.A.M. The Video R.AM which is about 222 Megabytes and the normal R.A.M which is about 290 R.A.M. The PlayStation Vita currently has more R.A.M than even the PS3! 

Now in terms of sales, surprisingly and sadly, the 3DS is completely dominating the Vita. This is due to the fact that not only did the 3DS have a full one year head start ahead of the Vita, but Nintendo already secured most of the 3rd party publishers before Sony had a chance to. Another reason is that at the time the Vita was launched; only a few of its hardcore games had been released.  

Initially, the 3DS was priced at $249. But when it was released, Nintendo had a hard time selling the system. They had to cut the price down to $169, and to make matters worse, that was only a week before the launch of the Vita in Japan! 

The PlayStation Vita’s OLED screen is very vibrant and it produces the best graphics I have ever seen on a handheld console. The touchscreen and the rear touchpad are both very responsive and are fun to use in games.  

The PlayStation Vita has a variety of applications. For example, “Welcome Park” is an application that teaches you how to use your PS Vita system through various tutorials. “Group Messaging” is an application that lets you send messages to PS3 and PS Vita owners. “PlayStation Store” is an application that allows you to download content, games and movies to your PS Vita system and finally “Trophies” allows you to view the achievements that you’ve earned in the various games you’ve played. 

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