Sony's New PSP Turns Out to Be 'Full-featured' Console (page 2)

Jan 28, 2011
Tadashi Nezu, Nikkei Electronics

3G communication capability, GPS function

The NGP has 3G communication capability in addition to the WiFi communication capability (IEEE802.11b/g/n) featured by its predecessor. And it has a GPS function, too. SCE will launch a new service called "LiveArea" and a new application called "Near," which utilize those functions. The LiveArea offers a virtual space to promote communication among users. For example, it can show other users' progress in a game.

The LiveArea is showing other users' progress in a golf game.
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Near is an application that utilizes location information. With the application, its user can check other users' locations and the types of games they are playing based on the user's location information. Also, it is possible to show the user's "footprints" on the screen.

The locations of other NGP users can be displayed.
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The dimensions of the NGP are approximately 182 x 18.6 x 83.5mm (size susceptible to change, excluding protruding parts). Its CPU is the quad-core version of the "ARM Cortex-A9," and its GPU is the "SGX543MP4+."

As a game cartridge, it takes a card-like medium that is dedicated to the NGP and uses flash memory. Forty-eight Japanese software makers, 16 North American software makers and 18 European software makers are currently planning to develop games for the console.

The new game cartridge
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PS Suite to start with games developed for PS

On the other hand, the PS Suite is a service that provides game contents mainly to Android-based portable devices. As for the reason why SCE decided to start the service, Hirai said, "(As mobile devices are now becoming multifunctional), games can be casually played on mobile phones, tablet PCs and so forth. This trend is growing, and we could not ignore it."

SCE aims to launch the service within 2011 by offering games developed for the first-generation PlayStation stationary game console. At the same time, the company will open the "PlayStation Store" online store, which can be accessed by Android-based devices. Contents for the PS Suite can be played with the NGP.

A game developed for the first-generation PlayStation being played on an Android-based device
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SCE will start a licensing program for software developers to provide PlayStation games to Android-based devices. Specifically, it plans to offer development environments for the PS Suite in the aim of inviting new game developers.