Sony’s PlayStation Vita is a handheld game console with a 5 inch display, a quad-core processor, and support for hundreds of games including titles for older consoles including the PlayStation Portable and some PSOne games.

Want to do even more with it? The Trinity exploit makes it possible to jailbreak the PS Vita and run homebrew apps and games, emulators, and more.

Trinity was first released in May, and recently the developer behind it published a detailed explanation of the exploit.

For users, the most important thing about Trinity may be that it supports the latest PS Vita firmware.

That’s important because this is actually the third public jailbreak for the platform. Folks have been finding ways to crack open Sony’s software for years, but Sony has historically released firmware updates that disabled the tools used to jailbreak the handheld gaming device.

But Sony officially discontinued production of the PS Vita hardware earlier this year, and it’s unlikely that the company will release any more software updates for the platform.

So not only does this mean that you can jailbreak a PS Vita running firmware versions 3.69 or 3.70, it means that you’ll probably always be able to use a PS Vita as a jailbroken device indefinitely.

That said, the steps for jailbreaking a PS Vita using Trinity do involve downloading a PSP game or game demo from the PlayStation Store in order to get an emulator on the device (because part of the exploit involves the PSP emulator). So if Sony decides to disable access to the PlayStation Store eventually, that could spell the end of this particular exploit.

Still, hacker TheOfficialFloW says he first discovered the vulnerability used by Trinity about a year ago, but held off on releasing it to the public until after Sony had discontinued the PS Vita in hopes of extending the lifespan of this jailbreak method.

While Sony is no longer manufacturing the PlayStation Vita, you can still pick one up from Amazon for around $260, or shop for a used or refurbished model at eBay (where they seem to be going for closer to $120 at the moment).

via Hacker News, @theflow0, and Wololo



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7 replies on “Trinity Exploit lets you jailbreak a PlayStation Vita”

  1. I hacked mine back when H-encore came along, so this isn’t super useful to me, but for anyone considering a Vita or who’s blown it off in the past, it’s really a great handheld and I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of mine. The number one thing these jailbreaks let you do is use a MicroSD adaptor in the cartridge slot, so you don’t have to be a pirate to benefit here, my Vita is full of games I paid for. I just wish it would have come along before I bought a 64GB memory card for more than I’d pay for a 400GB microSD today.

    1. I have a “HUGE” 16GB and I got it on black Friday amazon for like $20 and that was like 3 or 4 decades ago, the price never went that low ever again. So yeah, the microSD adapter alone is the #1 benefit even for legal users.

      1. SONY’s choice here is quite puzzling.
        Want to make piracy more difficult: use a custom flash card.
        Want to make it cheaper for users: include a microSD slot.

        Why didn’t they just make all the games digital, and keep a microSD slot instead?
        Better yet, include a large storage on the device, and have games installed on microSD ?
        Or worse comes to worse, keep the custom flash cards, remove the microSD slot, make sure the internal storage is large enough.

        And I feel like if they went the route of using a microSD slot for game storage/cartridge, they could have scaled that up from 2-4GB cards with light games (480p/60/Low) on a cheap handheld. Then to a 8-16GB cards for medium games (720p/60/Low) on expensive phones. Then upto 32-64GB cards of high graphics games (1080p/60/Medium) on cheap consoles.

        This means each cartridge is a game that can be used between the different Sony hardware/console, and all that changes is the graphics quality (resolution, framerate, quality).

  2. Hands down the best handheld you can get these days. Will run every emulator up to Dreamcast, has plenty of original titles and psp support. Plus it has overall much better hardware than similar priced emulation handheld or even boxes when speaking about pstv. Try and get a fat model, they have gorgeous OLED screens and are really hard to brick since there isn’t any onboard storage.

    1. God XD is better than a PSP all day. Better battery life, more games, better controls. OLED screens are prone to burn in. Even can play PubG with a controller. Bluetooth, HDMI out makes it a sociable console too.

      1. Did you mean the GPD XD Plus (64bit Android), or the more powerful GPD Win, or even more powerful the GPD Win 2…?

        It really depends on which Emulators, Apps, and Games you want to play.
        I will say the PS Vita has better quality input than the GPD Handhelds, not sure about the comparisons with their speakers and screens though.

        I like the concept of the Nintendo Switch but not its execution, so I’m really looking forward to a GPD Win3. I feel like they might release one in late-2020, probably using TSMC’s 7nm and a Zen2 CPU (15W underclocked, 4c/8t CPU). Hopefully it will have an integrated Navi GPU that’s as fast as a mobile GTX 1050, ie/ fast enough to be capable.

        1. LOL if you want to talk about the most powerful handheld gaming device out you should look at the Nvidia shield with the ability of Android to force the GPU to run all to the processes that 72 core GPU just shines

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