Sony’s NGP announced: stuffed with tech, no price or release date

Wow Sony has just announced the PSP2, for the time being they are calling it the NGP (Next Gen Playstaion?), it looks fairly impressive They have put in a 5″ OLED screen which is slightly bigger than the 4.3″ one on the original PSP and they’ve added not one but two touch sensors, one on the screen and one on the back of the device, the one on the back is the same size as the one on the front allowing 1 to 1 mapping of input without obscuring the screen. While I think this is cool I’m a little dubious, I’ve got big hands and I don’t think I can hold the device for hours on end the way the person in the picture above is, I like to get my mitts round a system, and I don’t want to be accidentally doing stuff because my hand brushes against the rear touch sensor.

The specs are quite impressive:

  • CPU: ARM® Cortex™-A9 core (4 core)
  • GPU: SGX543MP4+
  • External Dimensions: Approx. 182.0 x 18.6 x 83.5mm (width x height x depth) (tentative, excludes largest projection)
  • Rear touch pad: Multi touch pad (capacitive type)
  • Cameras: Front camera, Rear camera
  • Sound: Built-in stereo speakers, Built-in microphone
  • Sensors: Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer), Three-axis electronic compass
  • Location: Built-in GPS, Wi-Fi location service support
  • Keys / Switches: PS button, Power button, Directional buttons (Up/Down/Right/Left), Action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross, Square), Shoulder buttons (Right/Left), Right stick, Left stick, START button, SELECT button, Volume buttons
  • Wireless communications:
    • Mobile network connectivity (3G)
    • IEEE 802.11b/g/n (n = 1×1)(Wi-Fi) (Infrastructure mode/Ad-hoc mode)
    • Bluetooth® 2.1+EDR (A2DP/AVRCP/HSP)

But I wonder if all of that comes at the cost of battery life? The OLED screen will suck up less power but there is a lot going on under the hood there that will decimate the battery life.

This could be an amazing device there are a few things I’l like to know however:

Will it play video?

I must admit that I used my PSP for watching video more than I ever did gaming, the screen was just the right size for it.

Will it work as a Mobile/Skype Phone?

It’s got 3G and a microphone, can I make calls using it? I think the later PSP versions got a Skype application, this would be pretty cool, not that my mobile phone doesn’t already do this, but I might ditch my phone if my PSP could replace it, because lets face it I don’t use my phone as a phone much.

Does it come with a web browser?

The PSP did, it was rubbish but it did, with a 5″ touch screen this thing is as big as the Dell 5″ tablet, and would probably make for an okay browsing experience.

What is it running behind the scenes?

Sony have seemingly (From the screen shot) ditched the XMB they use in every other device, which to be honest is no big loss as the touch interface makes it redundant. But is this running a proprietary OS? Sony have been releasing a lot of Android phones and devices of late, and the “PSP Phone” is an android device, are Sony Computer Entertainment and Sony Ericsson talking to each other or are they working at ends to each other? Running android would make the device a great convergence device and would make it almost as much a competitor to the iPad as to the 3DS.

If Sony are following the same strategy as they are with the PS3 this would make sense, as it would allow the device to be an entertainment device which also plays games really well.

I’m sure I’ll think up more questions later, but assuming this comes out at a reasonable price, I’d consider buying one if some of the questions above were answered correctly…

Edit:

Sony announcing that they will “Bring the Legendary Play Station Content To Android” implies that maybe this is running Android? Maybe it’s not…

Edit 2:

It appears there is a promo video…

Sony’s NGP announced: stuffed with tech, no price or release date.

Author: Omar

Omar is the main/only contributor to Ohmz.net. He is a Computer Programmer based in Glasgow Scotland.

4 thoughts on “Sony’s NGP announced: stuffed with tech, no price or release date”

  1. Sony will be releasing an app which will let “selected” Android phones play PS games: http://www.computerandvideogames.com/285661/news/playstation-games-coming-to-android-phones/

    It’s related to the development of the Sony Ericsson Xperia phone, which is basically a PSP running Android 2.3 with all the phone hardware.

    The NGP (P in this case stands for portable according to CVG) is going to cost an absolute packet. I’d expect over £350 for it, which is likely going to crucify it in the same way the PS3’s price condemned it. Still, bloody impressive hardware.

  2. I think it depends on what angle they take while marketing it. Sony have started to go for an “It does everything” approach to the the Playstation line, so if it plays movies, and browses the web has a calendar etc as well as playing games it’s essentially a tablet with buttons for gaming.

    Look as the specs and compare with an iPad the only thing the iPad has going for it is screen size, if this thing runs apps it would be a killer product.

    And if it doesn’t run android when it’s released whats the betting that Someone will make it run Android though a firmware hack?

  3. I’m not sure this can really be pitched as a tablet. The screen seems too small for typing on and the rear touchpad looks quite awkward in the PR photos Sony has released. That said, I’m equally dubious about the 3DS (although the prospect of Ocarina of Time on it is very appealing).

    Incidentally, I read that it’s almost the same length and breadth as the GameGear.

    In comparison to the iPad, iPhone, Droid etc, phones were always going to be over taken by gaming devices in terms of raw processing power. Angry Birds and Cut the Rope don’t need massive GPUs and so on and I suspect if they did, they wouldn’t be as simple to develop or as popular with people who don’t otherwise game.
    It was just a matter of time for the components to become cheap enough for it to be worth Nintendo and Sony’s development costs.

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