Sony Handheld


Mid Boss
Sony Handheld

E3 2003: Sony Goes Handheld!

First specs and details on PSP (PlayStation Portable).

May 13, 2003 - Sony came out swinging today with a major announcement regarding its entry into the handheld market: the PSP. With a screen measuring in at a tidy 4.5 inches, the new device surely must have Nokia, Nintendo and other portable/handheld deck-makers quaking in their boots. In fact, the device is apparently so monumental, it has at least one Sony exec calling the unit "the Walkman of the 21st Century." Additionally, Ken Kutaragi, CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. and father of the Playstation commented that the device will be more powerful than the original PlayStation.

And just what makes this wondertoy so appealing? Well, other than the obvious welcome addition to the handheld market, we'd say it's these drool-worthy (and preliminary) specs:

UMD or Universal Media Device. This storage media is 60mm, about half the size of the traditional CD and has a capacity of 1.8GB. That's right GB. Expect massively complex, detailed gaming (for your handheld anyway). 2.4 inches.

ATRAC encoding support (Sony's proprietary sound format used in their minidiscs). This could mean it will be a multi-media device.

Graphics specs are also impressive: NURB technology for rendering with full 3D polygons.

The unit's widescreen LCD screen (480x272, that's the coveted 16:9 ratio we all love) will be backlit.

The unit's sound processing will feature full 3D sound, PCM, and will be "fully reconfigurable."

MIPS 32-bit processor.

Also, a secure ROM cartridge for anti-piracy efforts.

Super-one-chip solution for graphics, sound, etc.

Memory stick will be used for game saves. Also, for GPS functionality.

Rechargeable battery.

CPU: 90 nanometers with a clock speed TBD.

USB 2.0 connection for talking to your PC, cellphone, even your PS2.

Embedded RAM.

Supports additional video codecs (other than MPEG 4.)

We suspect that the PSP will also come equipped with an analog stick and, since the media is disc-based, it may also have a flip-top lid/cover.

IGN is tracking more info on the PSP and hopes to be breaking more news and details about the unit soon.

-- IGN
Helix Handheld - Not related to Sony's, but...

Helix portable gaming device unveiled

A new handheld from a company named Tapwave will make its way to the market in 2003.

Tapwave, a company formed in May 2001, held a press conference to unveil a new handheld gaming device named Helix. Tapwave spent a lot of time attempting to understand the current demands of the handheld market and felt that there was no suitable portable gaming device for the 18- to 30-year-old crowd, or the "Game Boy graduates," as the company put it. Tapwave polled Game Boy Advance users to find out what they didn't like about the device. In addition, the company went to several developers to ask what they would want in terms of hardware and performance.

The result is a device based on the Palm platform that has quite a few interesting hardware features. The CPU consists of an MX1 ARM9 processor manufactured by Motorola, a graphics chip from ATI, and new audio chips from Yamaha. Helix also features Bluetooth technology support for wireless gaming, dual SD card slots, dual embedded speakers, headphone support, two rechargeable lithium batteries, USB support, rumble support, and a 6.97-square-inch screen with support for 64,000 colors. As far as the actual look of the device, it seems to resemble the GP32 with its analog stick and shoulder buttons, but the Helix also features four face buttons.

After the basic information on the device was revealed, a demonstration featuring 3D engine technology created by Fathammer was shown on the screen. This particular demo didn't show all that much other than a mech walking around a city landscape and occasionally firing a missile or two. However, the demo did show that the device is capable of delivering at least PlayStation-quality 3D environments and models with some smoother textures and better special effects.

The demonstration then gave way to a rundown of the device's other features. Helix is capable of playing MP3s and a variety of different video formats (such as MPEG and possibly even Divx), and it can also be used to view pictures. In addition, since the Helix is based on the Palm platform, it can run any Palm application. Representatives from Tapwave would not answer questions about the battery life of a device with so much functionality, but they did say that the batteries are currently being tested and that the device's power demands are in the process of being optimized.

As far as developer support goes, the board of directors at Tapwave is made up of several industry veterans from companies like Activision, Electronic Arts, and Midway. The company has managed to partner with these companies, as well as Infogrames, but it remains to be seen as to what kind of software will actually be released for the handheld.

Pricing is still a mystery as well. Tapwave wouldn't give any specifics in regard to the price of the Helix, but it did say that the handheld will cost around the same amount as a new console, leading many to believe that it will be in the $200-to-$300 range at release. The Helix is currently scheduled for release later this year. We'll have more on the device in the coming months.
will probably be a battery hog especially since it uses optical discs instead of carts.

at least it should help bring a little comptetition (price/quality) into the handheld market.

I'm doubting I would dump my GBA for it.

Not to mention I don't like Sony.

I'm curious to see what the system itself will look like though.
N-Gage Details

N-Gage Pricing Revealed

Nokia announced that its device that combines cell phone and handheld gaming capabilities will cost $299 when it's released in October.

Nokia has announced that will release the N-Gage in major US retailers this October. The device will carry a suggested retail price of $299, in line with many feature-laden cell phones, while games will cost $30 to $40. The N-Gage devices and game cards will be sold at retailers including Best Buy, Circuit City, Electronics Boutique, GameStop, and Target.

N-Gage combines a several entertainment features in addition to full GSM phone capabilities. The N-Gage has a backlit color screen and face buttons designed to make it easy to control games. One of its unique features is that it has Bluetooth wireless support to allow nearby N-Gage owners to play multiplayer games without using a fee-based cell phone network. The device also has built-in MP3 music playback and stereo FM radio.

A number of game publishers previously pledged to release games for the N-Gage, most notably Activision, Eidos, Sega, THQ, and Taito. Few games have been specifically announced, but some will be at E3 this week. One newly announced N-Gage game that will take advantage of the device's wireless multiplayer capabilities will be THQ's Red Faction.
Originally posted by MTXBlau@May 14, 2003 @ 12:14 PM

The device will carry a suggested retail price of $299

little steep for a hand held, and by a newcomer....i'll pass on that one
Originally posted by racketboy@May 14, 2003 @ 01:17 PM

hype hype hype

I say Sony and Nintendo are the only ones that stand a chance

Yeah. That's what they said about Sony back when it was just Nintendo and Sega. Funny how the PSX ended up eating everybody else for lunch.

But a question, what about the GP32? I don't know much about it but it seems a lot more powerful than even the GBA. I would think it, too, can do real 3D graphics on a PSX level... But then the problem as I see it in regards to a US audience is that it's only made/sold in Asia (lik-sang)...
but Sony has muscle -- which got them into the console market

look at all the other attempts in the handheld market -- even Sega

I say Sony has a chance, but the others don't
Originally posted by Taelon+May 14, 2003 @ 06:41 PM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Taelon @ May 14, 2003 @ 06:41 PM)</div><div class='quotemain'> <!--QuoteBegin-racketboy@May 14, 2003 @ 01:17 PM

hype hype hype

I say Sony and Nintendo are the only ones that stand a chance

Yeah. That's what they said about Sony back when it was just Nintendo and Sega. Funny how the PSX ended up eating everybody else for lunch. [/b][/quote]

Who's they?

The way I remember it, everyone was jumping on sony's bandwagon.
*sigh* I mean BEFORE rumors of a new console by Sony, then known for TVs and stereos, turned into something tangible
All I know is that a new GBA SP is half as expensive (or even less than half) as what the other handhelds are supposedly going to cost.

I love my GBA and I'd love to have a handheld that can do all that Sony's says it can, but I'm definately not willing to fork over all that cash when I could buy a new Xbox or PS2.
The Game Boy brand is too ingrained on people's consciousness to be taken over easily, same as Playstation is.

Hopefully it will give companies a kick up the arse so they stop with the SNES ports. Or at least do some ones that aren't easily available on the SNES (Fire Emblem, Seiken Densetsu 3, Bahamut Lagoon, Star Ocean etc in English would be a good start).

Personally I really hope the next wave of handhelds are just amazing 2d machines (Saturn-esque) rather than going 3d. If people see 2d on home consoles as unprofitable then it's great that there's still a platform for new stuff.

Still on handhelds, this is the best news I've had in ages. And check out super-deformed Samus,!
I personally I am just getting a gp32 I will just sell my ngpc and games and get it emulated on their, and play my SNES games on their for free. Plus the mp3 playback is cool.
Originally posted by Sickliquid86@May 15, 2003 @ 03:29 AM

I personally I am just getting a gp32 I will just sell my ngpc and games and get it emulated on their, and play my SNES games on their for free. Plus the mp3 playback is cool.

I hated the GP32.

I thought it would be much cooler than it is. It is one of those fragile, hyped, things that seems outdated before it ever really catches on.
Originally posted by jeff-20@May 14, 2003 @ 07:52 PM

I thought it would be much cooler than it is. It is one of those fragile, hyped, things that seems outdated before it ever really catches on.

Just like the Activator!
Heh! I totally ignored the possiblity of another company rivaling Nintendo in the hand-held market
I figured that once a company has out done the rest of the competitors and become the dominant company for that industry then others entering that industry would have a 1 to nil chance of topling them. But I forgot that if you have money and a name for yourself, you can do anything

Well, as MyName said, maybe there will be enough competition for Nintendo to make more original and innovative games for the system in the future, and less snes ports. I'll be looking forward to any challengers to Nintendo (not that I dislike Nintendo, but I think that when there is competition around then there's more motivation in making good games
Originally posted by SegaFreak@May 15, 2003 @ 09:12 AM

That link doesn't seem to be valid, Myname.

Weird.. You'll just have to use your initiative to find the stories, won't you?
I highly agree with Sickliquid. Hell... watch ALL the specs be all false. Personally.... I'm glad Sony is entering the handheld market. Why? Simple. GameBoy will always reign supreme, and that means Sony will lose money off of it! HA! And... WHY WHY WHY must they keep recycling the same ol' gay "PlayStation" name? WHY?!!!