Buy the PS Vita? Maybe…

If you are yet to buy a Playstation Vita and you need to know the facts to consider, then this is for you.

When the Playstation Vita (popularly known as PS Vita) initially entered the Nigerian market in the second half of 2012, it did not have much of a warm welcome for many had already spent a lot on Sony’s four older editions of the PSP. As others had not even finished with their PSP devices, it would be only consequential that a majority saw it as a “wish list” device than a comfortable replacement for their existing handhelds. Of course, another issue was the pricing and availability of the device in the local market. It penetrated rather slowly and with the introduction of its new-found media and connectivity options, it looks like more money would be spent to ensure maximum use of the relatively powerful device.

The PS Vita comes with either just Wi-Fi or along with 3G for an extra cost. With two analog sticks (much better than the former and rather annoying PSP nub), two cameras, a front touch sensitive screen and rear touch pad, microphone, a “Six-axis” motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer), three-axis electronic compass, built-in GPS receiver (only for the 3G version) as well as Wi-Fi, 3G, and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR connectivity, it is clear that the PSP Vita does show off some very impressive abilities. The two cameras bring to life face and head detection and a very solid array of customization options. Internally, the device features a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 Mp-Core processor (3 of the 4 cores are usable for applications) and a quad-core GPU. The PlayStation Vita has 512 MB of system RAM and 128 MB of VRAM which can support cross game chats.

The 3G PSP Vita is carrier locked to very few networks across the world. Hence, the 3G option is not very relevant on Nigerian soil for the time being… well… until a hack or unlock or something of such sort is released or a contract has been signed. For those wondering if former PSP games would be playable on their PS Vita, the answer is yes. However, at the moment you would only be able to play games that are downloadable via the Playstation Store. PS One games compatibility is also enabled on the PS Vita; available on the Playstation Network. So i hope you have your wifi internet ready for some serious downloading. Reports surface that the PS Vita has been hacked by a reverse engineer named Yifan Liu to run source code and “homebrew”. This is usually the first step before everything else in that direction. Trust us to keep you posted on this development.

Good news would be that the PS Vita is equipped with a storage media slot in addition to the PS Vita card slot, so that users can choose their memory capacity based on their use. But the very bad news is that it is also not compatible with standard memory cards, such as SD cards, and instead stores data on more expensive proprietary PS Vita memory cards, which are available in sizes from 4 GB to 32 GB. 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. Some media applications and games require a proprietary PlayStation Vita memory card inserted to be used. 5–10% of the game card’s space is reserved for game save data and patches. You may also be interested to know that the PS Vita only supports mp4 based formats (precisely MPEG-4 Simple Profile (AAC) and H.264/MPEG-4 AVC High/Main/Baseline Profile (AAC)). Yes! No .avi and .mkv for those who understand what that means. A PS Vita is considerably large for a handheld and could be a bit heavy. We don’t recommend you to be very fond of dropping the device – get it? Of course you do!

The PlayStation Vita web browser does not support the proprietary Adobe Flash. However, HTML5, cookies, and Javascript are available. Sony also has put in the PlayStation Vita official Recovery Menu to solve common firmware based problems. As a new feature of PlayStation Vita’s Live area, latest game information such as downloadable contents are shown on the game LiveArea. In addition, by scrolling down the game LiveArea, the “Activity” of other users who are playing the same game can be checked instantly.

A truth is that there really isn’t any device that can give everything that everybody wants. But whether the PS Vita would be a device that is worth your saving money to buy immediately or not would be a choice that we hope this post would at least equip you to decide.

MG – Android Gaming solution for kids

PlayMG has announced the sure release of a dedicated Android gaming handset which they call the MG. The device features full access to the Google Play Store.
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The MG is an Oval-shaped device which features a single-core 1GHz cortex A5 processor, 1GB of system RAM, a 4-inch Corning Gorilla Glass display screen, a 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera used for facial recognition, 4GB of internal storage (expandable to 32GB via microSD), a wifi radio and some amount of standard sensors like the gyroscope, compass, accelerometer and more.

The device is powered by Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich. A 1,880mAh battery which yields 3.75 hours of playtime and more than five days of standby. PlayMG says the device is lighter than a standard Android handset due to the fact that it lacks mobile phone internals.

The MG device will come preloaded with a suite of games like Need for Speed Hot Pursuit and NBA jam (allows your kids to play with the device as soon as they unbox it), if they want other Games, they’ll have to visit the Google Play Store and spend some of their parent’s cash. This is where the MG‘s exclusive apps come in. PlayMG has created a family collaboration app that ties in closely with a service called BillMyParents, which provides families with a refillable debit allowance system for kids. The service itself isn’t exclusive to MG, but the in-app management system is. A widget on the device’s home screen keeps kids updated on how much money they have available, and an automated notification system keeps parents informed on how their kids are spending. For example, if Ade (kid) buys something inappropriate, his account can be locked down instantly via text message. The collaboration app also updates parents on how often the device is being used, what games are being played and more. The idea, is to trust, but verify that your child is making good decisions.

The MG is built and design for the purpose of satisfying kids. It’s also an alternative gaming device to other portable games like the PlayStation Vita or Nintendo’s 3DS. Many thanks to Sean Buckley and Shawn knight for making this article a success.