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Signs Of Life As Vita Updates To Firmware 2.00

A firmware update can't stop the downward sales trends, but it can make owners a little happier.

Whilst the PS Vita hasn’t been the subject of a great deal of positive chatter over the last few months, the recent announcement of PlayStation Plus for the platform was met with considerable enthusiasm. That won’t necessarily translate into sales for the console – that will be down to how Sony market the subscription service – but it does placate those already invested, albeit temporarily.

In the meantime, as part of Plus, the PS Vita has been updated to version 2.00. Back on the PSP, 2.00 was a major refresh, bringing the web browser to the PS Vita’s older brother. This time around it’s a similar story with the Vita getting a massive overhaul of that particular bit of software. A quick test suggests that the HTML5 rendering is a big step in the right direction, getting a score of 243 on html5test. It was previously 58.

That’s nowhere near perfect (it’s out of 500, and Chrome easily gets around 450) but it’s better, much better. And crucially, it’s faster too, and as we said yesterday it’s now able to run alongside a game, meaning you don’t need to quit out of WipEout to browse the web.

The PS Vita gets its first major system update.
The official changelog for firmware 2.00 is actually quite extensive – alongside Plus support is a new email application (more on that here) which is automatically added to the homepage. It supports Gmail, so it’s worth a look.

You can also transfer content between a Vita and PC over Wi-fi, rather than having to use the cable – you’ll need a new version of the Content Manager Assistant for that, though, it won’t just work. Folders can be transferred too, not just individual files.

Other tweaks to existing applications include a boost to Maps, which can now display weather information. There’s some nice system-level stuff too – you can now use the Vita’s buttons in more applications (if you’re averse to the touchscreen interface) and you can configure the alert notifications a bit more too.

However, it’s – as usual – away from the official lists that things become more interesting. For example, you can now freely stretch and move the screen for PSOne games, meaning custom sizes and aspect ratios, a nice feature, although you can’t yet run a PSP game in 1:1 pixel ration, which seems like an easy change to make but one that continually gets overlooked.

Other things picked up elsewhere this morning include the fact that the LiveArea for the Friends app now shows what your friends are up to, the screenshot function is now instant, friend requests now have the ability to add a message, the Video app has been altered a little with new features like slow motion replays, games can be updated without having the card in and a few little tweaks to how Trophies are displayed.

It’s a great update, that’s for sure. I’d personally still like to see folders implemented, so I can organise my apps and games away from the still slightly clunky scrolly bubble menu, but this is definitely a step in the right direction.

PS Vita firmware 2.00 is available now.

  1. Nismo400R84
    Since: Aug 2012

    Near doesn’t seem to work keep getting error code (c2-13444-6) when trying to acquire location

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 11:23.
    • Origami Killer
      Since: May 2010

      Same here, well to be precise Near hasn’t worked for about a month for me so it’s no change :P

      Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 12:54.
      • ZYZ_10
        Since: Sep 2009

        Is it a 3G or wifi model Vita?
        I have 3G and mine hasn’t got past the location acquiring stage for the last couple of months and no change with firmware 2.00 until I switched my mobile network back on (I’ve had it set to off for months because I don’t use it) and it works.

        I’m sure Near is supposed to work on both 3G and wifi, but im not sure.

        Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:06.
      • MuggleMind
        Since: Aug 2008

        in reply to ZYZ_10’s comment

        “I’m sure Near is supposed to work on both 3G and wifi, but im not sure.”

        Some people just can’t make their minds up about when to be sure! :P

        Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:08.
      • ZYZ_10
        Since: Sep 2009

        Hahaha! Oooops… I’m sure I typed “I’ve read that…” rather than “I’m sure that…” but to be honest I’m not sure.

        Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 15:57.
      • bowie
        Since: Jan 2012

        I checked in with Near the other night and found myself in an unpopulated area where previously I would have found a bunch of other players. Maybe that is why.

        Sony need to do something to make Near useful and worthwhile. Near could be really useful for finding people to play against/with but the UI needs to be rethought. I am downloading the update now and will be interested to see if it has changed significantly.

        Comment posted on 21/11/2012 at 03:10.
  2. JBoo
    Since: Oct 2011

    This comment is hidden.

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 11:57.
  3. Jag
    Since: Feb 2009

    The one major thing that was missing in this update is the folder support for apps. That or increase the number of pages available as with the minis, PSone, PSP and Vita titles I have I can easily reach the maximum.
    The update has lots of useful additions so I’m happy but I really need folder support soon!

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 12:36.
  4. MuggleMind
    Since: Aug 2008

    Another step forward, maybe, is the fact that the Playstation Mobile SDK has just come out of beta as well.

    Maybe good times are finally on their way for vita owners?

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 12:51.
  5. avengerrr
    Since: Oct 2012

    They brought folders to the photos section……………YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 12:53.
    • TSBonyman
      Since: Dec 2009

      And Videos too. System-wide folders would be preferrable but this is a good start.

      Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:30.
  6. jimmy-google
    Since: Feb 2009

    Good to see the online storage is already working in the UK. Found several games don’t have the option to be copied, I’m assuming those are the ones that store the save on the game card.

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:07.
    • jimmy-google
      Since: Feb 2009

      Used over half already. Fifa needs 43 MB and LBP needs 52MB.

      That 1 GB might not last long

      Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:16.
      • Slash
        Since: Jun 2012

        You’re lucky, ModNationRacers Road Trip takes about 350MB and LBP 88MB..

        Something must be wrong, I don’t believe that MNR saves are this big. Also no downloaded mods, carts or tracks, nor created by me. so this is quite strange..

        Comment posted on 23/11/2012 at 13:33.
  7. cam the man
    Since: May 2009

    Updating at the moment, hope there’s no hidden bugs.

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:15.
  8. Scotty34
    Since: Apr 2011

    this is all very positive look forward to trying these out

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:16.
  9. TSBonyman
    Since: Dec 2009

    The new email app is just the thing to help round out the Vita’s functionality for me. It seems fairly capable although all the emails show up in plain text, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
    I’ve aready switched off the automatic patches for games. I always find it tiresome when ps+ downloads a patch for a PS3 demo or game i’ve already deleted or completed and with the Vita’s storage limitations it seems like it could be even more of an issue.
    I’ll be trying out the wireless content transfer as soon as i get to my mac but overall it seems like a pretty good update. Folders would be handy though.

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 13:20.
  10. Kennykazey
    Since: Mar 2010

    Fantastic update! I was really saddened by the poor choice in PSOne aspects, and now it’s fixed! And the new browser will come in very handy! Excitement!

    Comment posted on 20/11/2012 at 14:03.

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