Jan. 24, 2011 at 2:35 PM ET
Sony's much-talked-about-yet-entirely-unconfirmed PlayStation Portable 2 game machine will have 3G connectivity, an absolutely gorgeous touch-screen and may be as powerful as a PlayStation 3 game console, according to the latest rumors making the rounds.
Though Sony has remained officially mum on the topic of a successor to its PSP game gadget, major Japanese newspaper Nikkei has released some interesting details about the device.
In Japan, the new game machine will be able to connect with that country's NTT DoCoMo network via a 3G phone connection, according to game site Kotaku, which brought us the overseas report. This makes it likely the PSP 2 will have some kind of 3G connectivity in the U.S. as well and it means PSP 2 owners would be able to download movies, music and games over this network (though there is no word on pricing and carriers).
Meanwhile, the paper also reports that the PSP 2 will feature an OLED touch-screen — that means gamers can prepare their eyeballs for some absolutely stunning visuals. (Here's hoping it will have a screen as gorgeous as the Super AMOLED ones currently seen on the popular Samsung Galaxy S phones.)
And game business site MCV has reported that Sony has told licensees the device "is as powerful as the PlayStation 3" and that it will arrive in stores perhaps as early as October.
As we recently reported, Sony is expected to make an announcement this Thursday regarding the future of the PSP, with a PSP 2 announcement to be followed by an announcement about a separate PlayStation phone.
If all these rumors are to be believed (and there's good reason to believe at least some of them), Sony is readying a one-two punch to rival both Nintendo's forthcoming Nintendo 3DS game machine as well as Apple's iPhones and iPod Touches by offering two different kinds of portable game machines: one for those who want a combo smart phone/game device, and one for those who want just a really powerful portable game machine.
Take a look at some of what we know about the PlayStation Phone here.
And here's a little tid-bit that's been making the rounds about the PSP 2: It could have some kind of touch-panel/touch-screen on the back.
I recently asked John Koller, director of hardware marking for Sony Computer Entertainment America, about all the PSP rumors. And though he would not comment on them directly, he made it clear that the company intends to continue setting itself apart in the handheld gaming market by offering big console-like games in a portable package.
"I can't talk about anything in the future. But I can tell you the PSP will be part of our line-up for the foreseeable future," he said. "Making those big bets on those big games, that's what we're doing."
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