PS Vita overheating prompts Japanese investigation

National Institute of Technology and Evaluation looking into dozens of reports of Vita port burning out during recharging process; Sony says the issue is "not product oriented."

A Japanese government agency is taking a closer look at Sony's PlayStation Vita after dozens of cases of systems burning out during recharging, according to an Andriasang report.

The PS Vita is so hot right now.

The National Institute of Technology and Evaluation is investigating 31 cases of overheating regarding the portable, 23 of which happened in Japan. No injuries have been reported in those cases, but in each one the overheating damaged the PS Vita power cable connection slot.

Sony Computer Entertainment Japan reportedly blamed the incidents on liquids or other objects in the port while the systems were charging. Because the company doesn't believe the hardware is faulty, it will not be issuing a recall, and those with damaged systems will need to pay for their own repairs.

A Sony representative confirmed the damaged system reports, saying, "The cases were caused by partial short-circuit on the multi-use port of PS Vita and USB cable due to small particles or liquid attached to it. We believe this is not [a] product oriented issue. The short-circuit damaged the Multi-use port, resulting in being unable to boot the system."

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Kiaininja
Kiaininja

It's too early to say if these short circuit cases are user error or Sony's fault. For all we know the Vita starts getting prone to burning up after a certain amount of usage which is different for everyone. I'm guessing we will know for sure if these problems are isolated when most of the millions that bought the handheld used it regularly for at least a year without any occurrences.

MATERAZZI_23
MATERAZZI_23

23 of which happened in Japan....

 

The Japanese are known to play their portables on the commute to work and school, maybe some of them made contact with rain, etc? 

coolmike999
coolmike999

I'm worried there is a problem with them. I really baby my stuff. My first Vita had the screen go dead for no apparent reason. My replacement had a wireless issue - it never connected to anything. Sony didn't want to believe this until they actually tried it themselves. My third seems fine so far, but I really hope that's the last problem I see with it. I don't even use it that much, but I'd like to believe it will be there when I need it.

 

For those of you suspecting the users - I wouldn't. It seems corporate nature to deny problems until you can't get away with it any longer. Particles on the connectors - really?

jflkdjs
jflkdjs

I still own a PS1, PS2, PS3 and a PSP Phat 1000. And I've never had any problems with any of them. I will be getting a PS Vita soon. And No, I'm not a fanboy. I have a GBA, DS Lite, Wii and an original Xbox. And I want a 3DS XL too :)

BlackLense
BlackLense

Some vita just want to watch the world burn...

Telekenesis123
Telekenesis123

People use USB connections 100's of millions of times a day, if this was a problem with USB, since it is a standard design across devices it would be common to all devices; it only happening on VIta devices points to it being a Vita problem.

 

Of course Sony will deny it until it can't deny t anymore, holding on to the chance that it can get away with not providing a warranty for a faulty hardware design.

JimmeyBurrows
JimmeyBurrows

If they've put them too close together and a small particle of water built up from humidity is causing the problem, I'd call that a design flaw... But then aparently putting a piss poor blu-ray laser in the original ps3 wasn't a design fault, so pretty safe bet Sony can pass it onto the consumer either way.

All in all hope it is just user error (there is pleanty of it these days.)

mamajoe
mamajoe

We have two and play them all the time and we haven't had any problems.

rafpac
rafpac

People, if it is truly a hardware problem then we are in deep manure. Sony is a company that did not acknowledge the ylod on ps3s. But it also might be because people ARE careless with liquids and electronics. The low numbers are not indicators because it might affect systems used extensively for a long period. The systems were released in Japan before the rest of the world. We might not know because people barely use the Vita systems at the moment. Anyways we'll see.

XanderZane
XanderZane

You don't say. Sony in denial as usual. lol!! Reminds me of the old PS1 and PS2 days. Sony screaming "It's not a hardware problem." again and again until they were taken to court and lose. We'll see if this becomes a bigger problem as time goes on.

albinopig
albinopig

Only a couple dozen? Well, I don't see the problem really. It is probably linked to outlet problems or an offbrand charger. But will see.

sophospeare
sophospeare

My concern wouldn't be the number of failures, that's pretty low and well with in electronics standards, my concern would be the way it fails.  If these things are truly overheating, then Sony better do something in future designs to have an auto shut off or something in that power port to prevent overheating or you know they'll regret it if/when one of these actually does injure someone.  Because when that happens, everybody and their brother will come out of the woodwork filing a lawsuit.  If it is a simple short though and it isn't actually overheating, then I do think Sony's in the right here.

SciFiCat
SciFiCat

31 failures out of 2.5+ million units sold, if it where hardware related the number would be much higher.  We have to remember that some people are complete slobs and have no care for the condition they keep their property.

Dragon_Nexus
Dragon_Nexus

Sony product burning up during a charging process.

 

Not like we've ever heard that happening before.

TTDog
TTDog

Overheating during charging isn't the fault of the product? Are they going to blame the wrong type of electricity?

barny0111
barny0111

Nothing is ever perfect. But the vita does feel like a solid piece of hardware.

 

Ive never had a problem, and it's never been too hot. Though the power connection is a sensitive part of the console. I'll keep an eye on it from now on.

franzito
franzito

That's why I never bought a system at the launch: they always need improvement.

Uesugi-dono
Uesugi-dono

It's pretty easy to tell water damage on electronics.  Add to that my own Vita experience (this is literally the coolest handheld I've ever owned; the Xbox controller gets hotter than the VIta) and I see no reason to doubt this.

obsequies
obsequies

sounds like people are just wanting a new unit when its their own fault for screwing it up..can't say I haven't tried that before

fanaticsm
fanaticsm

YLOD infection!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

31 out of 2.2 million PSvitas sold worldwide since December 17 2011. Sony is likely correct about no faulty charging cables. I have not had a problem with my PSvita yet. So I will make sure that the end of the Ac charging adapter does have any dust or derbris. While the Psvita has had a slow start, only 31 out of 2.2 million PSvita have shorted out. This is not a YLOD or RROD type of issue. Have people tried to have this covered by the warrenty? Sony customer service can be iffy at the best of times.

Taoninja
Taoninja

This just happened to my nephew and his Vita... We were under warranty with Gamestop for 30  days so we got lucky. But Sony is crazy to think it isn't faulty hardware: in my nephews' case it burned out after a recharge and there definitely no liquid damage... It is Sony that needs to fix this...

snova9308
snova9308

no recall gives consumers doubt that if they buy the vita now, if they will burn just like the ones on the article. and yet sony is saying the hardware is fine.

 

the real problem with this approach is that people who read this article will probably think twice on buying a vita.

 

whether or not it is the hard ware issue, i would say this choice of not giving a recall would impact sales a lot

leeko_link
leeko_link

Well guess somebody needs to invent a PS Vita cooling fan just to be safe.

DiscGuru101
DiscGuru101

Sony is no stranger to overheating issues. The PS2 Slim had a recall on the power supply (due to fires) and a few early PS3's melted too.

Okamiiiii
Okamiiiii

Me: "NO! THE HEAT GOES RIGHT THROUGH THE BATTERY!"

Vita: "My battery?"

Me: "And then you blow up..."

 

NettoSaito
NettoSaito

The thing is, we have NO idea what the people actually did with their Vitas. For all that we know, they were using 3rd party chargers, with their Vitas turned on 24/7, with it being plugged into an outlet that has 50 other things plugged in with it. Just because YOU may take care of your system, it doesn't mean everyone else does as well.

johnrare
johnrare

Sony seem to be a big business but yet they have the lack of customer service to help.

 

well..........Sony seem to like playing the cat and mouse game consider that Sony doesnt take responsibility for what happen to the vita yet they blame other things for the cause.

 

very disappointing on how Sony is making excused to cover what has gone wrong with there product

rkzhao
rkzhao

 @Telekenesis123 1) it's no the usb

2) A usb port on my laptop got trashed the other day when my laptop fell off my bed with the cooling pad plugged in. Obviously there's a design flaw.

XanderZane
XanderZane

 @TTDog lmao!! I can pour a gallon of water on my IPad while it's charging and drop it from from roof and it'll still work just fine. Now let's try that with any PSP or PSVita product and see what happens. lol!!

rkzhao
rkzhao

 @TTDog The article is poorly titled. It's not an overheating issue. It's a short circuit issue. Short circuiting creates heat. Whether that short circuiting is from user error or hardware fault is what they are trying to investigate.

 

Look at the numbers though. 31 cases out of a couple million sales isn't indicative of an hardware issue. Of course there's probably unrecorded cases as well but it's still a rather low percentage.

 

People do stupid things, whether it's because they're just stupid or as an accident, these things happen. Kids especially are more prone to having careless accidents. A percentage this low can easily be written off as user error.

 

Of course, we'll have to wait and see. It could very well be a design oversight. In a way, you can say not making things idiot proof is the fault of the designer nowadays.

XanderZane
XanderZane

 @franzito 

That's why I wait as well. I'll continue to wait for the price to drop.

XanderZane
XanderZane

 @Uesugi-dono 

Xbox controller getting HOT. What!?!? Mine never has while charging. The PS3 controller on the other hand. I have to keep it away from my daughter while that baby is charging.

obsequies
obsequies

 @DiscGuru101 they didn't melt..they burst into flames and ran out the door..get you're facts right

Hypermug
Hypermug

 @Okamiiiii That was an amazing episode...Meh, I'm probably waiting until the next iteration to get my Vita anyway.

Leir_Bag
Leir_Bag

 @NettoSatio That's what some people have been trying to say for some good time on these comments. If you count the fact that those are just 31 cases out of more than 2,5 million Vitas that are confirmed to have been sold as of right now (probably more, that number is old), then I really don't see why this is even here on GameSpot. Not that it's GS's fault, it's in every gaming website for some awkward reason.

supernator13
supernator13

 @johnrare After you buy it, it's your product.

Is Sony responsible if someone steals your stuff? "This is your product Sony. How could you let people steal your product, and not recompense your customers. That's just bad business."

"How could you allow your product to plug into outlets that may experience a surge?"

"How could you allow your product to not be water-proof?"

"How come 0.000012% of your systems short out all the time? We all know that 100% of your customers are perfect, and they live in perfect, protected environments... so the Vita's design must be flawed."

obsequies
obsequies

 @johnrare I fix consoles and computers as a hobby..I really don't see this as a real issue given the amount that have been claimed. the rrod was over 40% on first models..this is 30 some out of how many million. I can almost guarantee you that whoever they are..they screwed it up and are trying to find a way to get a new one..sony is not going to issue that on the account that if they do..anyone who screws it up is going to take advantage of them. a short out is very..very likely..maybe on the next model they can have counter measures that if a short was about to happen it can trip a fuse or mini breaker ha. would make sense

Sefrix
Sefrix moderator

 @XanderZane I do recall having my 360's cord replaced when it first came out. IDK something about fires or some such garbage ;P

XanderZane
XanderZane

 @obsequies 

LOL!! My old PS3 has actually stood the test of time so far. It still gets hotter then an old radiator, but I haven't had any issues with it yet, thank goodness.

supernator13
supernator13

 @obsequies I heard they stole your credit card info and sold it to terrorists and then self-destructed. :)

supernator13
supernator13

 @Leir_Bag And now everyone that reads this with a Vita is going to automatically assume this is the problem if they have any issue with their own Vita. Even if their Vita won't charge up because the dog chewed the charger. "It's not the charger, because the charger worked fine yesterday! I read online that Vitas are faulty and burn out while charging, therefore I know that it is the Vita."

DiscGuru101
DiscGuru101

 @XanderZane Hopefully obsequies sees my point. They run hot. And hey supernator13, PS3 did steal your credit card. Who knows who has it?