Sony have recently showcase their Next Generation Portable (NGP) which is PSP2.
Before I give my 2 cents of this device, here's the video of the functionality of the features build in.
With the real threat of mobile phone gaming, Sony decided to throw as much value feature in this New Generation Portable.
If there is a sentence for me to conclude about NGP aka PSP2, it would be "All built into one". Why is that so?
For gameplay controller beside the traditional Directional buttons (Up/Down/Left/Right), Action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Square and cross) and shoulder buttons (rigth and Left), there are additional analog joystick one both side of the game console. That is useful feature but the fun didn't end there. Sony throw in a Multi-touch screen as it is supposedly to support android gaming such as mobile devices which is another useful features.
The fun get better when they decided to also include six-axis motion sensing system which was like Wii and common to most feature mobile phone devices like iPhone. SO far the features listed before this is not something new. The only unique input was the touch pad behind the controller.
With so many input option, it somehow lose the simplicity of gaming devices and such "new" features may somehow sabotage or backfire through gaming experience. One of this would be the movement of your fingers on the touch pad behind the console especially the user are holding it and will move their finger at the back of the devices. Another would be the six-axis motion movement when the players are playing it on the Go moving from places to one places or another. It may send some unwanted signal that may affect the gameplay.
Having such good features is good thing but ultimately, it is up to game developers to maximizes these features in their games. I would say that gaming is getting more complicated.
PSP was ahead of their time when they have their Wifi built in the early millennium. However beside the games, the browser was far from being friendly for anyone to surf the net using Wifi. It was acceptable to me since it was suppose to be a play station console. But the demand of customer now is different. So this time round, Sony throw in as many connectivity as possible such as Bluetooth and Mobile network Connectivity (3G). Note that for Mobile network Connectivity, users will likely to get their own plan with their telco which mean telco maybe able to sell this gaming devices.
Such configuration setting is on par with any mobile phone device less phone call making which maybe able to work around using Voice over IP which till now Sony have not really comment on that as an option.
If connectivity need to work, I hope that they provide good browser on PSP2/NGP as it is now importance to consumers.
One of the major feature for mobile devices is the batteries life and charging time. So far not much confirm news on the PSP2 NGP but it was said that user can no longer take out the battery for replacement as a copy protection on the original PSP as "pirates" formally use a specially modified batteries to hack.
In conclusion, I personally felt PSP2/NGP had kinda lost it uniqueness it can provide as it is facing the real treat of mobile gaming and Nintendo 3DS which taken them by surprise in the pass few years. No doubt NGP need to conform to date with mobile phone gaming but if that is the case, it will always be doing catch up and they are on the losing end. It is now up to the game developers to save the day for Sony PSP2 with fun titles to set them apart.
Would this really be the Next Generation Portable only time will tell and it would not take long to find out such as their current product PSP GO.
Feel free to give your few cents too at the comment. :)