Signs Of Life As Vita Updates To Firmware 2.00

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.

[drop2]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.

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40 Comments

  1. Great news!

  2. Excellent news, updating now.

    Live?

  3. It does look good and my Vita is already updated.

    There are also Plus options in the Playstation Network menu, also the ability to automatically synch trophies, save games cloud synch, and so on, but that’s disabled by default and there’s no place to input the time we want the Vita to switch on and synchronize, at least I didn’t find it.

  4. Dammit, didn’t bring the Vita with me.
    I wish that content manager also worked with the PS3 wirelessly :/

  5. that html test is interesting.
    Chrome got 448.
    i thought i’d try Internet Explorer, for fun.
    IE 9 for the record.
    and it got 138.

    the ps3 browser got 68.
    when was the last time they updated that anyway.

    i thought i’d try the psp browser, but the test didn’t even seem to work, so i’m guessing that counts as a zero.

    still, good to hear the PSV has a decent browser, and it may even be a much better one by the time i get one.

    • Just tried IE 10… Still only got 320/500

      • I’m stuck on IE 8 at work and it only gets 42. I do also have chrome (which is lucky)

  6. So can you seperate the save files now and just back them up?
    I’m glad there’s some decent changes and hope the folders option isn’t too far away.

    I’m hoping to back up my gravity rush save game. Then trade in my retail copy and re download my old save and carry on from the plus free gravity rush but not sure if that will work?

    • You should be able to upload your save to the cloud plus storage and then redownload it to your vita. At least thats what im hoping for for my uncharted save.

  7. am in the UK mine as updated and i must say the browser is much better .it is that much better i am writing this comment from my vita .

  8. Do you still have to be connected to the internet to be able to copy videos from the pc to the vita? one of my biggest bug bears!

  9. Life.

  10. I don’t like the email thing like sing star you are forced to have it, thought it was optional

    • Yeah but at least its useful?

    • You can move it to somewhere it doesn’t annoy you, that’s the big difference.

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