Sony may consider porting PlayStation Vita OS to smartphones

Sony is considering porting its PlayStation Vita operating system to smartphones and tablets, a move that would expand the platform beyond mobile gaming and into other form factors. However, it's clear that no decision on doing so has been made.

Sony PlayStation Vita

Sony PlayStation Vita

Kazuo Hirai, who will soon take the helm as Sony's new CEO and has been a driving force behind Sony's PlayStation efforts the past few years, said that the company could use the Vita OS for mobile as well as for gaming. Another executive, Sony Computer Entertainment Senior Vice President Yoshio Matsumoto, elaborated on the idea.

"If you're asking if we've made it in a way that's expandable, so that it's possible to apply to smartphones and tablets on top of achieving the high responsiveness we need for gaming devices--it is possible," Matsumoto said, according to the Japanese publication AV Watch. However, he seemed to back away from the idea by noting "that doesn't mean that we're applying it to smartphones and tablets at this point in time, but its been designed with expandability in mind."

AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T), which will exclusively provide the mobile broadband connectivity for the Vita, announced last month at the Consumer Electronics Show that it will offer consumers two data plans for the device but will not require a long-term contract. AT&T will offer 250 MB for $15 and 3 GB for $30. Sony plans to release the device in the U.S. Feb. 22 and will charge consumers $249 for the Wi-Fi-only version and $299 for the 3G/Wi-Fi model. 

Sony is in the process of taking control of smartphone vendor Sony Ericsson, which has banked much of its mobile success on Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android platform. However, even though smartphone shipments have increased as a percentage of Sony Ericsson's overall handset sales, the company has not yet found consistent financial success. Sony Ericsson reported a $326 million net loss for all of 2011, with most of that loss coming in the fourth quarter.

For more:
- see this The Verge article

Special Report: Portable gaming: Is mobile the future? 

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