2011 has not really been a vintage year, so far, in the world of gadgets. Sure, the year started well, with the launch of the fab and ultra-successful iPad 2. But since then we've had a slew of disappointing product launches: the Motorola Xoom, the HP Veer and TouchPad, the BlackBerry Playbook, the Nintendo 3DS. All good products, but all feeling a bit overpriced and underpowered - apart from the Xoom, which is just overpriced.

Our hopes were raised a couple of weeks ago, then, when we heard that Sony's PlayStation Vita - its powerful new successor to the PSP - would be out in the UK before the end of 2011. Leaked sales material for a major retailer suggested a launch date of 28th October.

Well, it's not to be. Whether a misprint or an elaborate fake is to blame, said promotional material was misleading. Sony have announced that the Vita won't make it to Europe - or the US, for that matter - until 2012. If you want a PSVita for Christmas, you'll have to expensively import one from Japan.

So 2011's chances of having any really great hardware launches have basically now narrowed to one product - the iPhone 5. How depressingly predictable.

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