Posted by John on August 21, 2011

PlayStation Vita has more RAM than PS3 (hey, cross-game chat!)

More is always better, right? For Sony’s upcoming PlayStation Vita portable, more RAM means it has some features that big brother PlayStation 3 doesn’t: namely, cross-game chat, courtesy of the console’s Party system. “So the reason why we were able to include something like Party, which enables cross-game voice chat,” Sony Worldwide Studios prez Shuhei Yoshida told Eurogamer, “is because we designed Vita so it always has enough resources to handle something like that behind the game while it’s running.”

Sony has finally confirmed the specifications of the system’s RAM, after rumors that the electronics giant had halved the RAM to better compete on price with the 3DS. “There were some rumours for the last few months. Some developer mentioned the RAM was halved. We never announced the amount of RAM, and we never changed it,” Yoshida said. So in order to combat confusion, they went into Gamescom unafraid to share those details.

And, without further ado, we’ll share those deets! The PlayStation Vita has 512MB of RAM and 128MB of V-RAM, compared to the PlayStation 3’s 256MB of system RAM and 256MB of video RAM. While that’s half of the PS3’s video RAM, Yoshida reminds us that the resolution of the two platforms is very different. “The resolution on the PS Vita screen is much lower,” he explained. “Even though it’s four times the resolution of PSP, compared to the console, the amount of data you have to push is much smaller.”

While this all sounds like good news, there is another reading: Since the Vita uses all that extra system RAM to allow for cross-game chat, one could assume Sony will remain unable to implement the long-requested feature on the PS3. Then again, nearly five years into the console’s life, that inability should be pretty apparent to everyone by now.

[Update: Apparent as it may be, we thought we'd share this additional quote that Eurogamer published. "Once a game gets RAM we never give it back," Yoshida said. "It's not possible to retrofit something like that after the fact."]

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