Sonyâs PlayStation Vita represents the companyâs second entry into the volatile handheld gaming market. The original PlayStation Portable found reasonable success as a largely traditional system, with console-style games being bought in boxes from stores just like other PlayStations, but the portable gaming market has changed in the six years since that console launched. With $0.99 smartphone apps like Angry Birds satiating the boredom of many commutes, just how much appetite there is for a "full" on-the-go gaming experience is debatable. Sony's answer? Pack as much as it can into a single device, and price it starting at $249.99.
On paper, the PS Vita is an astonishing piece of hardware, with a quad-core processor powering nearly PS3-level graphics on a 5-inch AMOLED touchscreen backed up by two analog sticks, a touch-sensitive back panel, and a smartphone-style OS. It's a confusing prospect â a dedicated gaming handheld with a lot of features taken from devices that have caused people to question the need for dedicated gaming handhelds in the first place. "Vita" means "life", but will there be a place in yours for Sony's latest creation? Let's find out.