Here is the PlayStation Phone

Here is the PlayStation Phone
The strength is not so much in the technology but in the controls. According to the PSP Phone specs leaked from the Chinese site IT268 and reviewed by Engadget, the PlayStation Phone is a fairly powerful but not amazing device. However, the inclusion of a PSP-style control system means that the gaming experience will be radically different from ordinary phones and perhaps consequently more akin to hardcore gamers.

IT268 rumors speak of a device rather similar to the PSPgo in terms of aesthetics, having the shape of a typical touch screen phone but featuring a slide-away control system that contains a d-pad and six PSP-style buttons, plus an odd "swipe" for the analog touch control that is done using the two thumbs.

The screen is a 4 "LCD with a resolution of 854x480: a considerable upgrade over PSP's 480x272, but still far from the standards set by the iPhone 4 with its 960x640 Retina display. Other leaked items include a five megapixel camera with an LED flash, support for MicroSD, 512MB of RAM, 512MB of ROM and a 1,500mAh battery.

Speaking of the main processor, according to what IT268 says we have a Snapdragon QSD8255 to direct The show. It is a complete system on chip (SoC), overall similar to the components that make up Apple's A4 processor, including the CPU and graphics technology. It also contains the chips needed to connect to the GSM network, together to a wide range of data protocols from GPRS to HSPA + The CPU itself is a Qualcomm Scorpian, based on an ARMv7 core running at 1GHz.

Regarding the graphics the QSD8255 has an Adreno 205 core, radically improved over its predecessor 200 and on par with the best single-core GPUs manufactured by IMG, the Apple partner. Some independent tests, while incomplete, have positioned it almost at the level of IMG's SGX540, found in the Samsung Galaxy S.

The QSD8255 is nothing new, however. It is a common component used by existing phones like the HTC Desire HD but it is clearly very performing, settling almost at the top of current smartphone technologies. The PlayStation Phone, based on Android, should work really well in running current games designed for this operating system and if, as we expect, Sony is working on specific products for this phone, the manufacturer will have the benefit of being able to tailor it. titles for this exact hardware configuration, resulting in a gain in performance.

However it remains uncertain what kind of address Sony wants to give to its new phone. It may be that the company is looking to aim for a more casual market, while the future PSP2 will be aimed at the existing hardcore audience.

A certain mystery surrounds the announced PlayStation Pocket which will run on the phone, an app which will presumably host the specific games for the device and the portal from which they can be downloaded. In the past Engadget has talked about a new "ecosystem" designed in collaboration with Google, which is responsible for the Android OS that runs the phone. However, the question remains whether this is true, bearing in mind that Sony already has its tried and tested PlayStation Network infrastructure. If there really is no PSN support, you have to ask yourself how involved is Sony Computer Entertainment's new phone, holder of the PlayStation brand.

There are also doubts about how this new device will settle in the hierarchy of PlayStation machines. Apple established this from day one: the iPod Touch range is a by-product of the iPhone range. The Touch does almost everything the iPhone does, except connect to a telephone network. So, what will the situation be like regarding the PlayStation Phone?

The specs are significantly lower than previously assumed for the new PSP2. It clearly does not support the original touchpad on the back, and almost certainly runs a completely different operating system, so the hypothesis that it is an equivalent of the PSP2 with telephony functions is practically excluded. PSone titles could run on the phone via emulation but that would make the 854x480 screen a waste. Emulating the PSP's two 333MHz chips on the other hand is beyond the scope of the leaked specs.

Our sources tell us that existing PSP titles will be converted on the phone, which makes much more sense, but this introduces some Difficulty: Firstly, it will take a large investment from Sony to bring its flagship products to the new platform, and secondly it means that third-party publishers will also have to spend money to convert their existing PSP catalog.

The PlayStation Phone looks like an interesting, if not stunning, hardware. Now it will be up to the games to convince us of its validity.

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