Truly. It is awesome. There are only a few small problems with it.
1) UMD disk is proprietary shit. Had they instead used a mini-dvd, the handheld would have been fantastic. But I realize that this is sony, and that they have delusions of owning the media market, despite having CLEARLY lost on all fronts. No Sony, your memory stick tech will NEVER be more user friendly than SDcard. No Sony, your UMD was never going to surpass mini-DVD. No Sony, your MagicGate bullshit for the vita will never catch on. Sorry. Users have the choice of non-sony things that work with all other non-sony things--- which are just as good if not better, than what you offer-- and are perfectly content to let your bullshit die on the vine. Like Vita is.
You SHOULD have used mini-DVD.
You SHOULD have used Micro-SD.
2) Sony dropped the ball bigtime on game selection for the PSP, and further shot themselves in the foot by failing to give proper dualshock type thumbknobs-- Even the (very excellent!) PSONE emulator (which works with basically every PSONE game, with some tweaking!) is rendered less than fully useful because of the lack of the other thumb knob. I bought my PSP fat explicitly to run CFW on it, so that I could play emulated SNES and NES games on it, and to run homebrew apps on it. (It works just fine as a small ebook reader, and as an email reader. Used it for quite some time before I bought a smartphone. Could check my emails anywhere there was open wifi!)
The reason why this was the SINGLE, ONE AND ONLY reason for that purchase decision? THERE WERE NO GAMES RELEASED FOR THE PSP WORTH BUYING, OR EVEN PLAYING. I have had my hacked PSP for.. Jeeze--- YEARS now. STILL, NOT A SINGLE PSP TITLE ON IT. PIRATED OR OTHERWISE. My choice not to buy games, was because there were no games worth having!
BUT-- Again-- the handheld itself is fantastic!
The screen is behind a very robust and thick slab of plastic that keeps it from getting screwed up. The FAT has an out of this world battery life. I could play an emulated snes game for literally 8 hours straight on a single charge! FANTASTIC! I STILL take the hacked PSP on vacation!
Where Sony screwed up?
Again, where they always screw up, and where they have always historically screwed up, and where they will consistently and forever screw up, until the day they collapse from the inside:
1) They were and still are delusional. They want to believe that we will buy something just for the Sony name. We wont. This carries over on anything tied exclusively to Sony products-- be it MagicGate or MemoryStick memory cards, proprietary spinning disc formats, audio CDs with extra special rootkits--- whatever. Does not matter. If it only works in SonyWorld, while everyone else plays in REALWORLD, SonyWorld will always get the attendence that EuroDisney gets-- which is to say, it isn't really in your best interests to try it, sony. If you want us to invest in something, you have to MAKE it WORTH our while. You have to present something tangibly better than what everyone else offers; It MUST be bigger, better, faster, and be all that and a bag of chips; Complacency will NOT work. This should be immensely apparent to even you guys by now. That means if you offer a console to compete with another quality product released by a competitor, YOU NEED TO OUTSHINE THEM IN EVERY POSSIBLE WAY. Do any less? You will lose. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. That means having bigger selection, better loading times, better quality gameplay, and all that ball of wax. Giving us a porche that runs on refined plutonium, when there is no real way to get that plutonium, is a good way to waste money engineering a very sexy looking product that nobody will buy. That's where you fucked up with the Vita. Sure, it looks sexy, and probably is a very well designed handheld. BUT YOU DONT HAVE A BIG GAME CATALOG FOR IT. Why spend money on a porche that runs on plutonium, when you can never get the plutonium? Why spend money on a porche that runs on plutonium when you have to deal with deadly ionizing radiation problems and issues with handling the fuel? SAME THING when asking why people would want to buy your consoles when they cant buy games for it (because they dont exist!), and why they would want to buy your consoles when they have to deal with poisonous customer experiences for the few titles that actually do exist. You make porches that run on plutonium to compete with VW Beetles that run on saltwater. The VW Beetle isnt all that fancy, but is well made, and it has a nearly endless surplus of fuel that can be used in it. Cost of ownership is low, and ease of use is very high. People will pick the VW Beetle over your porche every single time.
2) They consistently, without fail, refuse to listen to their user base-- They ignore allowing the easy/open development of software for their devices, and wonder why more open platforms that are easier to code for get all the developers. Here's a hint Sony. IT ISNT PIRACY. If you put a huge ass list of silly secret handshakes involving dancing while naked and slathered in peanut butter-- JUST to get the SDK for your platforms-- NOBODY IN THEIR RIGHT MIND THAT ISNT A PEANUT BUTTER NUDE DANCING FETISHIST IS GOING TO DEVELOP FOR YOUR PLATFORMS! Nintendo started to feel that pretty strongly recently with the epic huge failure of their Wii-U console. Those tools actually thought we would buy a "Slightly upgraded" version of a console that was obscolete the day it hit engineering, 10 years ago, just because it had their name on it. (Nevermind the shitty controller.) Nintendo has a huge list of simple games for the Wii, but they too shot themselves in the foot with poor selection with the Wii-U by refusing to do proper compatibility, and by pissing off developers with retarded peanutbutter naked dancemove handshakes that they only extend to their most specialest of friends. (Really nintendo, your requirements for getting an SDK are absurd. Go fuck yourselves. Go fuck yourselves into obscurity.)
So, Again, My old PSP Fat is AWESOME. It really is!
Too bad you fucked up an awesome handheld with your typical, insane, delusional, and peanutbutter nude dance fettishism-- SONY.
Dont be afraid to let people develop software legitimately for your devices that arent games! Nintendo allowed Opera to dev the Opera Browser cart for the DS! You could just as well have allowed ebook reader app makers to make ebook reader apps for your PSP, or allowed people to make email clients, or any number of other, useful pieces of software for your handheld! But NO. You thought small. You took a good handheld, and stunted it, on purpose, then wondered why it didnt grow. You are idiots. You have always been idiots. You will always be idiots until you wake up and realize that you cant control the universe, and HAVE to play with others to win in the modern world.
Look at Google and Android. A smartphone is more than just a phone. It's a compass. It's a GPS with interactive maps. It's a Fillet-o-fish finder, It's a camera, it's a chat client, ITS ANY FUCKING THING YOU MAKE IT INTO-- BECAUSE THERE IS AN APP FOR FUCKING EVERYTHING.
AND IT IS FREE TO DEVELOP FOR, WHICH IS WHY THERE IS AN APP FOR FUCKING EVERYTHING.
Sony-- Your killer app is to make a porche that everyone can drive, that runs on saltwater, like your competitors.
Make a handheld gaming console that is beautiful and polished, efficient, and made for gaming-- but versatile, and open to develop for. Dont try to be a smartphone though-- We already have mature offerings for that. Make a game console, that just so happens to run "free" apps--- the counter to current smartphones that are phones that just so happen to run "free" games. Allow advert based revinue streams like Google does. People dont have to sign multimillion dollar development contracts with you for you to make money with your products. Google is fucking HUGE compared to you. Look how they do that, and copy them! Stop being neurotic morons and play in the real word! Let your game console be useful as a bluetooth remote control for stuff like toy cars or airplanes-- with an open API/SDK to use it that way-- Let people FIND uses for your offering! ENCOURAGE tinkerers and small time developers. Get your money up front with a monetized advert stream, like apple and google does.
If you do, you will win.