Sony is fighting back. Once the gaming leader, the entertainment giant has been getting it from all sides: console competition from Microsoft and Nintendo, and portable gaming rivals like (again) Nintendo, not to mention the growing army of Apples. So, with the "smaller is better" idea in mind, Sony is about to release its newest portable gaming console, the PSP Go.
It's not due until October, but NBC Bay Area got a chance to play with the newest PSP (see it in action on Qik) and while the screen is still the star - and it is still impressive - the console itself has been radically downsized. Instead of a large bulky frame, the Go, perhaps in a nod to the Nintendo DS models, flips out to reveal its controllers. It's now considerably lighter, and doesn't require a purse to carry it around. A pocket will now do.
Game play is still good, and with 16GB of storage, the Go can now be your go-to device for movies and music as well. Thought still behind iTunes when it comes to ease of use, Sony's new PlayStation Store idea is a good one. Now your media can be downloaded to your device, from your PC or your PS3. If your Go gets crowded with content, just flip it back to the PC, and store it there until you want it again.
Good enough to beat the DS or iPod? Hard to tell. The Go is a different device than either of them. Like the PS3, it wants to do a whole lot. Also like the PS3, it's pricey. At @250, it'll cost almost as much as a PS3.
With families becoming a huge force in the gaming world, the PSP Go looks, at first glance, to be a good device arriving just in time. Now, instead of seeing a DS or iPod in the hands of every kid on a plane or in the back seat of a car, expect to see the PSP Go. Especially if the parents can afford the price.