Despite our rabid suggestions otherwise, it pains us to admit that there is a world of portable gaming outside of Apple’s miniature operating system. Sure, Nintendo announced their exciting three dimensional microsole at E3 last year, in the form of the Nintendo 3DS, but in a sick twist of fate, Sony’s new pocketsized Ferrari of a device has been getting a tremendous amount of buzz. The device, codenamed NGP (Next Generation Portable), would seem to some to be a direct shot across the bow of Apple’s hardware suite, touting features such as front and back mounted multi-touch input, internal six-axis gyroscope and GPS, an OLED display with visuals on par with the PlayStation 3, and even 3G functionality.
As you can imagine, a device like that not only turned heads, but also managed to drag attention away from another HUGE announcement for fans of Sony’s enormous back library of original PlayStation titles: The PlayStation Suite. Initially focused towards taking advantage of the Android phone, tablet, and set top box install base worldwide, the software is a proprietary set of emulation code, used to make a large number of Sony’s original PlayStation library available to the masses, without the necessity of purchasing a Sony device. This is a big step forward for the company, as they move to further proliferate the already ubiquitous PlayStation brand.
With all of this buzz about the NGP being in competition with existing iOS devices like the iPhone 4, many began to wonder if the PlayStation Suite’s Android focus was in an effort to draw attention away from Apple’s platform. I was one of those conspiracy theorists, in fact, noting that there was never any mention of iOS throughout last week’s Sony press briefing, while Android was name dropped numerous times.
In an effort to nip such discussions in the bud, when speaking with Andriasang, Sony Computer Entertainment CEO Kaz Hirai was quoted as saying:
“There are a variety of OSes, but we’re focusing first on Android. There’s also Windows, iOS and so forth, but we don’t have the resources to make it compatible with everything from the start.”
This is hardly a confirmation of the PlayStation Suite landing on iOS anytime soon, but it is good to know that we are at least on their long term radar. Now the question becomes if and when such a functionality would or could be added, not to mention how long of a head start it will receive on Android.
Unfortunately this will all boil down to a waiting game that no doubt has more nefarious motivations than satiating Cupertino’s fan base. It will be interested to see how this all plays out moving forward and rest assured that if anything breaks, you will read it here first.