Of concern when considering a portable gaming device (or any mobile device, really) is how many hours the thing will last on a single charge. We had our fears that the 3DS battery was a lightweight, but now it's official — even the newly launched PS Vita lasts longer.
One intrepid Japanese owner decided to get battery life figures comparing a PS Vita, Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation Portable and his results aren't surprising.
According to this video, with all three handhelds set to highest brightness and volume, the PS Vita came out on top, lasting three hours and 47 minutes and the 3DS at two hours and 35 minutes. The PSP lasted nine hours.
Although all systems are set at max brightness and volume — there are some discrepancies that are being overlooked.
First of all, the 3D on the 3DS is turned all the way up. And as Nintendo's said before: 3D is a real battery drainer. The 3DS could have lasted longer if the tester turned 3D off.
Second, each system has a different sized battery. Obviously, the PS Vita is larger in size and can accommodate a larger battery, so naturally, it has a 2,210 mAh battery. The 3DS's smaller design constrains it to a 1,300 mAh battery. The tester also had an extended battery with 2,200 mAh slapped into his PSP.
If the tester really wanted to be fair, all three systems need to have a similar sized battery. Of course the PS Vita is going to last longer, it's battery has an advantage of over 1,000 mAh.
So, as you can tell, the battery tests are far from controlled enough to have much merit.
Of course, the truth still remains: 3DS battery life is lousy and the PS Vita battery is average. Both handhelds have crappy battery when held up to most 10-hour chugging tablets or smartphones.
The conclusion: batteries for dedicated portable gaming handhelds are worse than the last generation — way worse. I know my DS Lite could do over eight hours and my PSP could last over four hours. But then again, those handhelds weren't pumping out 3D, and near-Wii/near-PS3 graphics.