Sony?s PS Vita arrives just as market may be fadinghttp://mybroadband.co.za/news/gaming/44013-sonys-ps-vita-arrives-just-as-market-may-be-fading.html
Reuters - February 23, 2012
Sony Corp?s Vita hits the United States on Wednesday, the latest in a long line of mobile gaming gadgets in the spirit of Nintendo?s Game Boy and Atari?s Lynx. But with gaming habits rapidly changing, it may also be the last of its breed.
Vita will be a tough sell to gamers who may already jam smartphones in their back pockets and lug Apple iPads around in backpacks.
At $250, it carries roughly the same price tag as a basic Sony PlayStation or Microsoft Xbox.
Analysts are skeptical that the product will find fans, even among the most hardcore segment of gamers that Sony is targeting with a $50 million marketing campaign. It also teamed up with fast-food chain Taco Bell in a sweepstakes that awards a Vita every 15 minutes.
?It almost feels like Sony designed a product for a world where smartphones and tablets don?t exist,? said Gartner Research Director Michael Gartenberg. ?It costs more than most phones and the same as most gaming consoles. It is hard to say who is the market for this.?
While Internet reviews of the Vita hardware have been strong, gamers gripe that it requires them to buy external memory cards with Sony-specific technology at $20 to $100 each. One senior games editor at gadget blog TechnoBuffalo called this hidden cost a ?glaring flaw.?
Besides $250 for the basic hardware, users could end up forking over as much as $40 or $50 for each top-flight game, plus a memory stick that will set them back at least $20.
Sony will sell a more expensive version of Vita with AT&T 3G service.
click for high resolution imageThe good
: The PlayStation Vita delivers amazing visuals on its 5-inch OLED touch screen that look almost as good as PS3 graphics. The system's launch lineup is very impressive and allows for downloading of some games (including all first-party titles) over the PlayStation Network. The Vita's operating system is smartly designed, easy to use, and ultraresponsive. The unit feels great to hold and has excellent standby battery life.The bad
: The Vita uses proprietary media and connections across the board, and even requires the purchase of a separate memory card to play most games and use most apps, which results in a hidden cost. Battery life could be better, and there's no way it can be replaced by the user. There's also no video out. Also, some antipiracy implementations are a bit cumbersome to deal with (for example, mounting the Vita to a PC/Mac for file transfer). It's also unclear how much storage the Vita has onboard, and it'll cost you more money for larger Vita Memory Cards.The bottom line
: Overall, the PlayStation Vita is the most advanced portable gaming system ever made. While the price is deceiving because of a hidden cost, gamers are getting an impressively complete package right out of the gate. A healthy launch lineup is sure to provide something for every kind of gamer, and a large selection of digital downloads is available right now.Editors' note
: This review does not reflect my experience with wireless 3G performance. Sony will be sending me the required SIM card at a later date. When this service is available, I will update the review accordingly.
Originally referred to as the NGP or Next Generation Portable, the Sony PlayStation Vita is the follow-up to the PlayStation Portable (or PSP) that was introduced back in March of 2005. The Vita was officially named and priced at Sony's E3 2011 press conference.
Read more: http://reviews.cnet.com/consoles/sony-playstation-vita-wi/4505-10109_7-34834815.html#ixzz1nZPcPFso