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PlayStation Vita Offers More than Games — Streams Netflix, Too

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PlayStation's handheld gaming device, the PlayStation Vita, goes on sale today, and along with it comes Netflix access. While gaming is the $250 to $300 Vita's big sell, Netflix subscribers will be able to stream TV shows and movies to the device's five-inch OLED screen. Netflix is available as an app, the only Vita app so far that provides streaming video.

PS Vita owners will also be able to stream music with a paid subscription to Music Unlimited. Curiously, the device doesn't offer access to PlayStation Networks own movie and TV show library.

The PS Vita is available as a Wi-Fi-only model for $249.99 and a 3G/Wi-Fi model for $299.99. Anyone enjoying streaming video on their Vita should be careful when on a 3G connection: AT&T is offering three data plans for the device, $14.99 per month for 250MB of data, $30 per month for 3GB of data, and $50 per month for 5GB of data. All of those could get eaten up quickly when streaming video. Sadly, there's no unlimited data plan, an option that AT&T has already phased out for new cell phone contracts.

Owners will also be able to load videos directly on the PS Vita through their Windows or Macintosh computer, and transfer videos to and from a PS3 game console. The PS Vita's built in browser supports HTML5, but not Flash.

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