More PS Vita Details From Japan

With the Japanese launch of the PlayStation Vita edging ever closer, more and more details are being revealed. The latest come from an interview with some of the PS Vita’s development team which was posted today on Japan’s Impress Watch and helpfully translated by andriasang.

Custom soundtracks, the ability to play your own music in the background while playing a game, are a much requested PS3 feature that has been only sporadically supported as the developers need to add support to their games rather than it being a ‘baked-in’ feature of the OS. PS Vita users will be able to set their music playing in Vita’s media player, switch back to the game and have their music continue playing with the game’s sound effects overlaid. As a base capability of the PS Vita this will not require developer support and should work in all games.

In some good news for those of us with PSPs and any prospective PS Vita buyers eyeing up PSP games on the PSN Store, the Vita is said to have an “extremely high” level of backwards compatibility with PSP software. It uses a mixture of hardware and software to provide support for PSP games and support can be further improved via subsequent PS Vita firmware updates.

Contrary to some earlier reports the PS Vita will not offer “full” Remote Play compatibility with the PS3. It had been suggested that the PS Vita would essentially be able to act as a remote interface to everything you might do on your PS3 but that is not the case, with Remote Play requiring the developers to add support for it in each game, much as it is with the PSP and Remote Play at the moment.

With Adobe recently revealing that they are to stop providing Flash support for mobile devices the question of what that means for the PS Vita was raised. The somewhat concerning response from Sony’s Division 2 Software Development Head, Muneki Shimada, was that they are continuing negotiations with Adobe and have not given up.

Sony’s decision to use yet another proprietary format for the PS Vita’s memory cards was touched upon. In addition to security concerns Shimada explained that they wanted to ensure that they had something that would provide “an equal condition for everyone”. Presumably by that, he means that they wanted to ensure consistent performance from the cards – something you cannot expect from the many different flavours and makes of SD Card.

Finally, here’s a video you may have seen a couple of weeks back if you read Kotaku. While almost eight minutes long, and in Japanese, the interest is in seeing just how amazingly versatile the PS Vita’s case is.  Seriously, it’s the Swiss army knife of portable console cases:

Here’s the YouTube link for those who can’t see the embedded video.



  1. Vita-l info? Oh dear… :P that case in the video looks great, I didn’t watch it all I have to admit, I would probably have tried if it had subtitles, but I can’t bear 8 minutes of Japanese. The case looks really versatile though, great stuff!

  2. The Euro launch isn’t that far away…. the lucky Japanese *****.

  3. Shame that storage will be at such a crushing premium for many would be music listeners.

    Also if they mean that they won’t ever allow 3rd parties to create Vita Memory Cards, then that is such a total crock. Sandisk created Memory Sticks that were generally better and cheaper than the official Sony versions. I find that very disappointing.

    Storage is pretty much my only real hang up about the Vita. Otherwise I’d be quite likely to jump right in there, but I’m on the fence and quite likely to wait for a second revision… Not that I won’t hunt down a nice pre-order ;)

    • I’d be quite surprised if we don’t see third party memory cards at some point.

      • If Sony don’t license the design, we won’t see them from other places. That’s my reading from between the lines, that Sony want full and total control over the memory cards here. How can they possibly offer that when licensing the designs? *eye roll*

        I’m not sure if other companies would really see that big an opportunity here anyway. At least Memory Stick was used across all Sony products, whilst this is just for the Vita, with a risky guess on the install base and growth for the first year.

      • My ‘reading between the lines’ was that they could control the quality of the parts used.
        I agree that a lot of third parties won’t be interested in manufacturing them unless they are used elsewhere.

    • Yeah, Sony have to ensure that there is always something not included with their consoles which are also conveniently expensive to buy

  4. I wonder what kind of insentive there is for a developer to use their dollars to add remote play to a PS3 game…?
    If Vita takes off in a major way, I can see some developers opting to do it but why would you bother if not?

    • two sides to it really because if they are planning a PSV version of their franchise anyway then that may just detract sales from it, meaning they’d want to avoid making it remote playable.

      • Very True. Although, I expect PSV versions of games to sell a little cheaper than the PS3 counterparts, so perhaps adding a PSV remote play is a way to drive sales of PS3 titles?

  5. Great round-up, thanks :)

    Has anyone seen/heard anything about whether Vita will support multiple users, like the PS3 does? Or is it a single-user device?

    • I want to know this too

    • I think the assumption is that it’s single-user like the PSP, but don’t know if it’s been confirmed.

      • Thanks. I’m sure you’re likely to be right, but it would be great to hear (either way) if anyone finds out for sure.

  6. Transcribe the audio, translate the captions, laugh out loud.

    • lol listen for a bit after 3:10 it is hilarious.

  7. Very clever case,unfortunate that the cards are so expensive

  8. Custom soundtracks are a welcome and long overdue addition, though I doubt I will get one as my phone is perfectly adequate for my portable gaming needs.

  9. I can’t say I’m that impressed with the case. So when you want to use the device if hangs and dangles like a piece of excess skin on a fat person who has list slot of weight. It isnt he most elegant of solutions with it swinging there. Some of the other features are nice, but it would bloody iratate me with it just hanging there in thin air. It’s no iPad cover, a simple, elegant and non intrusive design.

  10. Really good idea but cant help but think that case dangling might get in the way if you were playing with some of the AR stuff. Suppose it can be taken off pretty easily so dosent really matter.

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