A New Contender
The console video game market is fiercely competitive with all three current players looking to get a jump on each other with their next-generation platforms. The handheld market, however, has always been Nintendo’s domain ever since its launch of the original Game Boy in all its puke-green monochromatic-screen splendor. I remember receiving the original Game Boy back in 1989 as a generous gift from my aunt and thinking that nothing could ever be cooler than having video gaming at disposal wherever I go. The rest of the world agreed, which Nintendo continued to capitalize on (read: milk) over the next dozen years making Game Boy and its various pocket and color forms the best selling video game system of all time. Nothing much changed after the release of the Game Boy Advance SP, which served to ‘advance’ (Editor's Note: Marcus has been docked $100 for that pun
) Nintendo’s handheld technology forward to the SNES glory days. And before most people expected, Nintendo released the DS to give us an extra screen and Super Mario 64 on-the-go.
So, it looks like Nintendo is sitting pretty with its firm grip over the handheld market, right? Sure, the Game Boy has fended off attacks from technologically superior opponents such as the Sega Game Gear and the NEC Turbo Express – is there much reason to believe that there will ever be a legitimate threat to Nintendo’s reign? Perhaps the Nintendo of old would scoff at the idea of a challenger, but the Big N of today is much more cautious, especially of a certain Japanese consumer electronics giant. All one needs to do is look back to the days of the SNES and its never-released CD-ROM add-on (codenamed “Play Station”) in cooperation with Sony. Nintendo dismissed Sony as a partner; and the disgruntled Sony went on to develop its own PlayStation and hasn’t looked back since.
Today, we will investigate in great detail Sony’s foray into Nintendo’s domain: the PlayStation Portable, which will probably be more conveniently known as the PSP.
Dimensions & Miscellanea
As a portable game machine, the PSP is extremely powerful and in a completely different league than any other handheld device. Developers have said that, in some ways, the PSP has more power than the PS2 because it offers more effects that can be done in hardware rather than software. Let’s take a look at the technical specifications:
Approximately 6.7 in (W) x 2.9 in (H) x .9 in (D)
Approximately 280g / .62 lbs (including battery)