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Sony brought out the big news early at its pre Tokyo Game Show press conference today. Opening up the conference, Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Hiroshi Kawano announced the PlayStation Vita's Japanese release date as December 17.

Pricing remains unchanged form the previously announced ¥24,980 for the Wi-Fi only version and ¥29,800 for the 3G only version.

Sony also announced a partnership with NTT DoCoMo. DoCoMo will be Vita's 3G provider in Japan. The communications giant is preparing a new data plan for gamers which will debut with Vita. Players will be able to purchase pre-paid cards for 30 to 100 hours play time. These will be priced 980 yen to 4,980 yen.

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