First, a disclaimer: I've been gaming for 26 of my 29 years on this planet and I've seen just about everything the industry has to offer to the consumer market. This also means I've seen pretty much everything in Sony's bag of tricks so far, and none of it really phase me. Doesn't mean I like it, or that I'm for or against Sony, it just means I've been around this block before a few times now.
That said, I hate to call attention to the fact that any one who decides to knock off points for the price of this card isn't being fair. Yeah, the price is steep on top of everything else you'll need to get the Vita going, but at this point it really shouldn't surprise you that Sony will pull a proprietary memory card out of its hat for an exorbitant price. Thats just what you get when you go Sony. If you think cutting some stars off here is going to get them to knock down the price, you don't know Sony. Start a letter writing campaign or a petition, that might net better results.
Really, since you have no choice but to use these cards, because Vita games require them, until someone comes out with a cheaper alternative (which as of my writing this, hasn't been mentioned as far as I know.. Usually Sandisk will do something like this) your only choices if you want to buy a Vita is to get a card, whichever size it happens to be, Or just not get a Vita at all.. Which is extremely limiting and disappointing, if you had your hopes up.
If you do get a Vita and need a card, you need a card that works -And these cards do work. I have a 16gb and an 8gb ab both work perfectly, no bells and whistles, you just put it in your Vita and it'll start saving things to it. In fact, you can't really do too much with the Vita without putting a card in at all. You try to download or play anything and it'll quickly tell you your missing this vital piece of hardware.
Seriously, the product works and that's all you need to know. Prices may be high, and they may drop one day, but till then you need to stomach them if you want to use this system -till then at least know they aren't selling you a shoddy item.