Well, I currently own the Vita TV. As far as it being "region locked", it's not really either. It will play your physical games just fine but you can only access the JPN PSN. So, Physical games are not while PSN games are region locked.
Also to note, the system is set up for english gaming which is nice and will most likely allow you to access a US PSN account when the service becomes available. Cause when you try to log in with one it just says "This is not available in your region". So it seems like it will be eventually.