PS Vita sells 1.2 million units worldwide

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Sony has sold 1.2 million PS Vitas worldwide, a promising start for the gigantic handheld console. It’s just over two months since the Vita went on sale in Japan, and a week since us Brits were able to pop to our local games emporium and pick one up.

There’s no knowing how much we contributed to the total sales, as Sony didn’t break down the figures by region. But it did acknowledge the European and US launches helped the Vita “exceed expectations”. It’s still early days, but maybe smart phones haven’t killed the handheld console after all.

The Vita touched down in the UK last week, with Asda undercutting everyone else, charging just £197 for the Wi-Fi-only version. A 21-year-old from Uxbridge was the first Brit to pick one up. It went on sale in Japan just before Christmas, and shifted 321,400 units in the first two days — though that lagged somewhat behind the Nintendo 3DS, which managed 370,000 in its first 48 hours.

Is 1 million units (and counting) enough? Game studios are famously conservative, requiring what they see as guaranteed sales of millions of copies before they’ll commit to the huge expense of producing a game. With 60 million PS3s sold, that’s a massive user base to sell games to.

Let’s say the Vita sells 5 million this year — that’s great, but it’s still a pretty niche system. So we’re likely to see a lot of ports of games already created for the home consoles. And if you’ve bought a £40 game for your PS3, are you going to buy the same one for £30 on your Vita?

The Vita’s Japanese launch was marred with some faulty hardware, with some consoles having stains on the screens, and others refusing to boot. The UK launch was relatively glitch-free, though there is a slight software issue. And the Facebook app was pulled, but that was Facebook’s fault, according to Sony.

The Vita packs a 5-inch touchscreen, but there’s a touch panel on the back, which adds even more controls. That’s along with the screen, two thumb sticks, buttons and a d-pad. It is pretty large compared to phones though, and games are a lot more expensive. The battery isn’t brilliant either. You can also stream PlayStation 3 games to the Vita without switching on the TV, though they won’t be the full versions.

Did you buy a PS Vita? What do you make of it? Do you think it’ll sell enough to make it a vibrant games platform? Let me know in the comments below, or on our Facebook page. is updated regularly per day with the latest Slim PS3 news, reviews and features.

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