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Sony PSP new features announced March 16, 2006

Posted by fukumimi in IT, Japan.
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It is a bit pathetic that I got around to reading the news about the PSP via an overseas blog (Russell Beattie’s blog article about the PSP annoucement) when the press conference was held in this city.

My excuse it that in scanning the news headlines yesterday, all the domestic press were focussing on the delay of the PS3 release. Positive news regarding the PS3 was the confirmation that the PS3 will be fully compatible with PS and PS2 media, and the announcement of the network service which is offered without any basic subscription charge, and will connect to the Sony servers over the open internet.

Anyway, with regards to the PSP, some interesting features were announced.

OK, this isn’t a feature but they announced a “base model” PSP for 199Euro/USD.

Downloadable games bootable from MemoryStick, combined with a PS emulator, should unlock a wide library of games. Contrary to Russell’s interpretation of the news conference, the GameWatch article states that PS games will be made available via download, and would not require UMD.
The announced accessories sound interesting:

The EyeToy for PSP will allow video chat but also brings motion tracking technology to the PSP, it will be interesting to see how that technology will be used in a handheld game platform. One easy use may be to integrate video chat with motion tracking to allow avatar headshots which mimic expressions of the user. It could add a level of expression capability whilst maintaining privacy as required.

Another accessory is the GPS unit for the PSP, so your PSP can become a portable Sat-Nav platform. Integrating GPS with games may bring about games which mesh the virtual and physical worlds in some way.

Also announced was Flash capability for PSP, and an expansion of functionality around RSS, to make the PSP a viable audio and video podcast player.

Software updates will be available in the coming months, the accessories go on sale in the autumn.

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