Sony Confirms New PS3 and PSP Functionality for Europe22 Aug, 2007 By: John Gaudiosi
At the Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe confirmed multiple new peripherals for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable. While none of these features have been confirmed for North America yet, Sony Computer Entertainment America has said “it's exploring their options” for these new features.
Sony will introduce PlayTV, a combination TV tuner and personal video recorder (PVR), for PS3 in spring 2008 in the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany and Spain. The company said other PAL regions will receive the device over time. The device will include twin HDTV tuners that will allow for 1080p resolution. Gamers will be able to share the TV shows and movies saved on the PS3 hard drive through the Remote Play feature of the PSP. Any content on the PS3 hard drive or on a PC hard drive can be viewed on a PSP via a Wi-Fi connection.
Also for the PSP, Sony has partnered with British Sky Broadcasting (Sky) to launch a Go! Video Download Service that will launch in the United Kingdom and Ireland in early 2008. The download service will allow PSP owners to watch sports, entertainment, music and other entertainment.
Another feature for PSP that Europeans will get in early 2008 is Go! Messenger. Through a partnership with British Telecom, the PSP will utilize voice-over Internet protocol technology that allows gamers to chat wirelessly free of charge. Sony will offer instant messaging through this service with an upcoming free firmware upgrade for the PSP XMB (operating system). Gamers will be able to use an on-screen keyboard for texting. Taking this experience a step further, a Go! Cam will allow gamers to see each other while they text or talk to one another, enabling video calls.
The GPS device that is currently available for PSP in Japan will be released in 2008 in Europe. Sony will include Go! Explore, a new satellite navigation package for PSP, with the peripheral. Through a partnership with TeleAtlas and NavNGo, the software will turn the PSP into an in-car GPS unit with 3-D city maps, 3-D landmarks and support for 11 languages.
Sony has not confirmed any of these devices for North America yet. Sony is working on entertainment and video download services for the PSP and PS3 for North America. And it's likely that the PlayTV device will eventually make it to these shores.