The first generation PlayStation Vita system (PCH-1000)
|Also known as||PS Vita|
|Developer||Sony Computer Entertainment|
|Type||Handheld game console|
JP: December 17, 2011|
NA: February 15, 2012 (1st ed.) / February 22, 2012
EU:February 22, 2012
Release date in other regions
RUS: February 22, 2012
ARG: February 22, 2012
CHL: February 22, 2012
AUS: February 23, 2012
BRA: March 2, 2012
CAN: October 2, 2012 (3G)
CHN: March 20, 2015
|Units sold||Between the system's launch and January 2013, 4 million units have been sold worldwide. Between January 2013 and June 2014, 1,837,710 units were sold within Japan alone. A total of 600,000 units were sold in Spain as of June 2015, and 446,000 units sold in France as of 2014. As of present, no other reliable sales figures have been released.|
|Media||PS Vita Card, digital distribution through PlayStation Network|
|Operating system||PlayStation Vita system software|
|CPU||Quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore clocked at 333 MHz with a boost frequency of 494 MHz while WiFi is deactivated|
|Memory||512 MB RAM, 128 MB VRAM|
|Storage||1 GB flash memory (PCH-2000 model only)|
|Removable storage||Proprietary PS Vita memory card (4, 8, 16, 32 or 64 GB)|
|Display||5-inch (16:9) OLED (PCH-1000)/LCD (PCH-2000) multi-touch capacitive touchscreen, approximately 17 million colors, 960 × 544 qHD @ 220 ppi|
|Graphics||Quad-core PowerVR SGX543MP4+|
|Sound||Stereo speakers, microphone, 3.5 mm headphone jack|
|Camera||Front and back 0.3MP cameras|
|Touchpad||5-inch multi-touch capacitive touchpad (back of the console)|
|Connectivity||IEEE 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, 3G, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR|
approx. 3-5 hours for games, 5 hours for video, 9 hours for music (in stand-by mode)
approx. 4-6 hours for games, 7 hours for video, 12 hours for music (in stand-by mode)
|Online services||PlayStation Network|
83.55 mm (3.289 in) (h)
182 mm (7.2 in) (w)
18.6 mm (0.73 in) (d)
85.1 mm (3.35 in) (h)
183.6 mm (7.23 in) (w)
15.0 mm (0.59 in) (d)
260 grams (9.2 oz) (Wi-Fi)
279 grams (9.8 oz) (3G)
219 grams (7.7 oz) (Wi-Fi)
PlayStation Portable (download only)|
PSone (download only)
The PlayStation Vita (officially abbreviated PS Vita or Vita) is a handheld game console developed and released by Sony Computer Entertainment. It is the successor to the PlayStation Portable as part of the PlayStation brand of gaming devices. It was released in Japan on December 17, 2011, with releases in North America, Europe, and other worldwide regions starting on February 22, 2012. It primarily competes with the Nintendo 3DS as part of the eighth generation of video game consoles.
The original model of the handheld includes a 5-inch (130 mm) OLED multi-touch capacitive touchscreen, two analog joysticks, front and shoulder push-button input, and supports Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and optional 3G. Internally, the Vita features a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore processor and a quad-core SGX543MP graphics processing unit. A revised model, the PS Vita 2000 series, released across 2013 and 2014, sports all of the same features with a slightly smaller size, extended battery life, and an LCD screen replacing the OLED display. Sony also released the PlayStation TV, a short-lived, re-purposed version of the Vita that allowed for the play of PS Vita games on a television screen similar to a home video game console, though the PS TV variant was discontinued by the end of 2015.
The system's design was created to meld the experience of big budget, dedicated video game platforms with the then up-and-coming trend of mobile gaming through smart phones and tablets. However, in the year after the device's successful launch, sales of the hardware and its bigger budget games stalled, threatening to end its lifespan. A concentrated effort to attract smaller, indie developers in the West, combined with strong support from mid-level Japanese companies, helped keep the platform afloat. While this led to less diversity in its game library, it did garner strong support in Japanese-developed role-playing video games and visual novels alongside a wealth of Western-developed indie games, leading it to become a moderate seller in Japan, and build a smaller, yet passionate userbase in the West. While Sony has not released exact sales figures, late-lifespan estimates in sales fall around 15 to 16 million units. In the platform's later years, Sony also promoted its ability to work in conjunction with its other gaming products, notably the ability to play PlayStation 4 games on it through the process of Remote Play, similar to the Wii U's function of Off-TV Play. Production of the system and its physical cartridge games are scheduled to end in 2019.
In line with Sony's ambition to combine aspects of traditional video game consoles with mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, the Vita contains a multitude of input methods. The device features a "super oval" shape similar to the design of the original PlayStation Portable, with a 5-inch (130 mm) qHD OLED capacitive touchscreen in the centre of the device. The device features two analog sticks, a D-pad, a set of standard PlayStation face buttons (, , and ), two shoulder buttons (L and R), a PlayStation button and Start and Select buttons. Motion control is also possible through Sony's Sixaxis motion sensing system, consisting of a three-axis gyroscope and a three-axis accelerometer. In addition to these input methods, specific to just the Vita, is a secondary touchpad that is on the back of the device.
Other hardware includes stereo speakers, a microphone, built-in Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR connectivity, and two cameras. The cameras are both 0.3 megapixel and run at 640×480 (VGA) at 60 frames/s, or at 320×240 at 120 frames/s. They can be used to take photos or videos using built-in applications on the system. The two cameras feature the abilities of face detection, head detection, and head tracking. The platform also launched with a model with 3G mobile data support, which required a separate data plan through a data provider. The 3G service has been partnered with NTT DoCoMo in Japan, AT&T in the US, Rogers in Canada and Vodafone in Europe and Australia. The 3G model was discontinued in 2013 and not made available in the system's future revised models.
Internally, the device features a custom system on chip with a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore processor and a quad-core GPU SGX543MP4+. Sony has stated that the Vita generally runs well under its full clock speed due to overheating and battery consumption issues that would ensue, instead placing its processing power "around halfway between the current PSP and the PS3". The Vita's internal battery has between 3–5 hours of power for game playing, depending on the processing power required for the game, screen brightness, sound level and network connections, as well as other factors. Additionally, the battery can supply about five hours for video watching, and up to nine hours of music listening with the screen off. The system does allow for additional external battery solutions as well. The PlayStation Vita has 512 MB of system RAM and 128 MB of VRAM. The amount of RAM allows cross-game chat to be used on the system.
Software for the PlayStation Vita is distributed on a proprietary flash memory card called "PlayStation Vita game card" rather than on Universal Media Discs (UMDs) as used by the PlayStation Portable. The size and shape of the card itself is very similar to an SD card. 5–10% of the game card's space is reserved for game save data and patches. The PS Vita is incompatible with standard memory cards, such as SD cards, and instead stores data on proprietary PS Vita memory cards, which are available in sizes of 4 GB, 8 GB, 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB. A maximum of 500 applications and games can be stored on the device at a time, regardless of data storage available. When the limit is reached, applications or games must be moved or deleted in order to access those beyond the limit.
Remote Play interactivity with PlayStation 4
All games developed for the PlayStation 4, with the exception of games requiring the use of special peripherals such as PlayStation Camera, are playable on the Vita through Remote Play. With the use of a Vita, PS4, and PS4 game, this allows a PS4 game to be run on the PS4, but its output transmitted to the Vita, with the Vita being used for the controller input, and the image and sound being transmitted to the Vita's screen and speakers instead of a television. The end result is similar to what a Wii U console does with its GamePad controller through Off-TV Play. The Vita technically has Remote Play functionality with the PlayStation 3 as well, though very few PS3 games supported the feature due to limitations with the less-powerful PS3 hardware. More PS3 games are available for streaming on the Vita through Sony's cloud gaming service PlayStation Now, though they are streamed over the internet in the form of cloud computing rather than directly from a physical PS3 console. First implemented in 2014, the service was announced to be discontinued on the Vita on August 15, 2017.
A revised model of the Vita was released in Japan on October 10, 2013, in Europe on February 7, 2014 and in North America on May 6, 2014. The revised model, officially called the PCH-2000 series and commonly referred to as the PS Vita Slim, is 20% thinner and 15% lighter compared to the original model. While it largely maintains the original's overall structure and layout, the original's OLED screen has been replaced with a lower-cost LCD display. The model also roughly added about an extra hour of battery life. The newer model also comes with 1 GB of internal storage memory, although it is not possible to use both the internal memory and memory card concurrently.> Upon inserting a PS Vita memory card, the system will offer to copy the existing data from the internal memory to the new card. This model has a micro USB Type B port, which can be used to charge the device along with any standard micro USB cable. The model was released in six colors in Japan (white, black, light blue, lime green, pink, and khaki), although it was only released in black and light blue in North America and Europe.
The PlayStation TV is a non-portable variant of the Vita; instead of featuring its own display screen like a handheld video game console, it connects to a television via HDMI like a traditional home video game console, and is controlled though the use of a DualShock 3 or DualShock 4 controller. Due to the difference in controller input between the Vita and a DualShock controller, Vita games that are dependent on the system's touch-screen, rear touchpad, microphone or camera, are not compatible. It also shares the Remote Play and PS Now functionality of a regular Vita. The system was released in Japan in November 2013, in North America in October 2014, and in Europe on November 14, 2014. The device did not fare well and had a short retail shelf life in North America and Europe, where it was discontinued at the end of 2015.
Physical software for the Vita is distributed on a proprietary flash memory card called "PlayStation Vita game card". All Vita games are also made available to be downloaded digitally on the PlayStation Network via the PlayStation Store, although not all games are released physically. Since its launch, digital-only releases have slowly become more prominent, partially in an effort to reduce production costs for release on the platforms comparatively smaller user-base, and partially due to the influx smaller-scale indie mobile phone games that have always been digital-only releases. Like the PS3 and PS4, the Vita contains Trophy support for games.
The system was designed so that it would be easy for developers to extract PS3 game assets and in turn use them to make Vita versions of games. Prior to the Vita's release, several third-party studios showcased tech demos of the device by exporting existing assets from their PlayStation 3 counterpart and then rendering them on the device, high budget examples including Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, Yakuza 4, and Lost Planet. While none of these particular high budget tech demos materialized into actual game releases, and few big-budget Western games would be made for both outside of PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, many Japanese development teams would go on to develop mid-level games that would release for both platforms, including Falcom's Trails of Cold Steel duology, Compile Hearts' original Hyperdimension Neptunia trilogy, and many entries from Tecmo Koei's Atelier and Dynasty Warriors series. The trend continued on the PS4 as well, with Vita/PS4 releases becoming common due to the spread of their userbases – Vita versions for Japan, where the Vita was larger in its initial years, and PS4 versions of games for North America and Europe, where the PS4 userbase was substantially larger. Few PlayStation 2 titles were ported to the Vita due to the PS2's complicated infrastructure – games that did, such as Final Fantasy X/X2 Remaster and Persona 4 Golden required extensive reworking, or were based on their PS3 counterparts, such as Jak and Daxter Collection, Ratchet and Clank Collection, and Sly Cooper Collection. Towards the end of its lifespan, Vita versions of games began to be cancelled, in favor of PS4 or Nintendo Switch releases.
The device is backward compatible with most PSP games; however, its lack of a UMD disc drive limits this capability to those titles which have been digitally released on the PlayStation Network via the PlayStation Store, but not physical PSP games or films. The Vita is also backward compatible with the majority of the PS one Classics – the group of PlayStation 1 games Sony has made available digitally for download, and PlayStation Minis – small-budget downloadable titles originally created for the PSP and PS3. Games from Sony's PlayStation Mobile initiative had initially been compatible, but were removed when the service was shutdown in September 2015. In Japan, select downloadable PC Engine and PocketStation titles became backward compatible as well.
A number of other third party apps commonly found on mobile devices have also been made available on the Vita, including Google Maps, (removed in 2015), YouTube (removed in 2015), Facebook (removed in 2015), Skype (removed in 2016), Netflix, Hulu Plus, Redbox Instant, and Flickr. While the Google Maps and YouTube apps have been removed, the websites are still accessible and usable through the internet browser.
Unlike the PSP and PlayStation 3, the PlayStation Vita does not use the XrossMediaBar interface. Instead it uses a touchscreen-based UI dubbed LiveArea, which includes various social networking features via the PlayStation Network. Each game or application is represented by its own circle icon, and selecting it leads the user to a panel with multiple options present, including running software itself, going to its respective website through the internet, seeing if there are downloadable updates available for the software, and seeing a newsfeed-like list of activities related to it, such as installing it or obtaining trophies, for both the user and others the user has interacted with recently.
Video Tutorial by The Games Shed: