Sony Challenges Apple TV with Vita TV Set Top Box

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Sony PlayStation Vita TV set top boxIt’s an interesting week for Vita news, that’s for sure. In addition to introducing a new PS Vita handheld model (which you can read all about over at  GamerTell), via The Verge comes news that Sony is introducing a new set top box, called Vita TV, which is positioned as a challenger to Apple TV, Roku, and similar media streamers. The new Vita TV — which will retail for ¥9,480 (around $95) or ¥14,280 (around $143) in Japan, depending on whether you want the set top box alone or a bundle with a Dual Shock 3 controller and  8GB memory card — is set to hit shelves in Japan on November 14.

What makes Vita TV interesting for both home tech fans and gamers alike is that it isn’t just a Vita in a box, nor just a media streamer. Yes, the new Vita TV is based on the same hardware as the handheld console. And yes, at least in Japan it will support video services like Hulu, Tsutaya TV, Nico Nico Douga, and Sony’s Video Unlimited service.

But that’s not all. In addition to playing PS1, PSP, and (some) Vita games (the ones that don’t require the handheld console’s touchscreen, that is), Vita TV is designed as an extender for PlayStation 4 games. That’s right, if someone is hogging the TV to which your PS4 is connected, you’ll be able to stream those games to another display via Vita TV.

No word yet on when, or even if, the Vita TV will be coming to the US, but the interesting thing is, if it does, it’s worth noting that the little device will not have the PS4’s 4K “Ultra HD” video output capabilities. So don’t get too excited about the prospect for a $95 (or $99, or whatever) 4K video player. If you want 4K access to Video Unlimited, you’ll still have to opt for the PS4 or Sony’s FMP-X1 4K Media Player.

Via: [The Verge]

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