PS3 launch details revealed; new PSP features and price announced

PS3 launch details revealed; new PSP features and price announced

In the wake of fervent rumors of the PS3's demise, Sony came clean with launch information about the PS3, while presenting a host of new features for a price-dropped PSP. Here are the main bullet points, separated by console.

PlayStation 3:

  • The PlayStation 3 will launch in all territories in early to mid-November 2006--with a pre-Black Friday release promised. No price was given. This is a delay from the console's purported spring release in Japan but on track with the speculated launch for the United States and Europe.
  • The 60GB 2.5-inch hard disc drive will have a Linux OS. It was not revealed whether the hard drive will come with the console, but one will be necessary to play PS3 games.
  • Sony is preparing an online gaming service comparable to Xbox Live. It will be called PlayStation Network Platform. No price was given, but "free" is being bandied about.
  • In order to meet the worldwide demand and avoid Xbox 360-esque shortages, Sony will produce 1 million PS3 consoles each month, promising 6 million by March 2007.
  • As expected, PS3 games will only be available on Blu-ray discs to curtail piracy. The PS3 will play DVDs and CDs as well as PS2 and PS1 games.
  • PlayStation Portable:

  • A new PSP bundle available next week will retail for $200--$50 less than the current bundle. The new bundle will include only the system with the built-in battery pack and an AC adapter. Gone is the 32MB Memory Stick, the headphones with remote, and the soft case. No word yet on the status of the worship cloth.
  • Sony is developing an emulator that allows the PSP to play PS1 games--legally. The games will be digitally distributed in the same way that Microsoft provides Xbox Live Arcade games and Nintendo promises to deliver previous-gen games on the Revolution. This leads speculation that Sony will ramp up the available memory, perhaps via a console redesign.
  • Beginning in October, the PSP will support Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Complementing it will be an EyeToy-esque accessory that supports motion JPEGs.
  • Rounding out the new features for the PSP is the ability to play games made with Macromedia Flash, RSS feeds in the Internet browser, and a GPS locator.
  • PlayStation 2:

  • The PS2 will remain firm at its $150 price tag. Sony will continue to support the console for another four to five years. It's always nice to have some humor at these press conferences.
  • Source: GameSpot (PS3) (PSP), IGN (PS2)

     

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