The device formerly known as the PlayStation NGP received an official name at E3, where Sony announced the next-generation PSP will be known as the “PlayStation Vita”. In addition, the device will support both Wi-Fi and 3G, and will be exclusive to AT&T.
Press conference attendees audibly groaned at the AT&T announcement. Sony Computer Entertainment president Kaz Hirai reacted sheepishly, adding that the partnership includes access to the more than 2,400 AT&T Wi-Fi hotspots.
Sony is already partnered with Verizon for the PlayStation phone, better known as the Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY.
Hirai reiterated that the PlayStation Vita will sport an OLED Touchscreen that was previously revealed to be 5-inches with a 960 x 544 resolution. It will also have a quad-core ARM Cortex A9 processor, dual cameras for augmented reality, dual thumbsticks, and dual touchpads.
The PlayStation Vita will also have deep social networking integration, including a feature called “Party” that will enable two-way chat between players even if they are running different games and “Near” for location-based gaming, networking with other Vita users, and virtual item sharing between games.
The device will also interface with the PlayStation 3, allowing players to begin a game on the Vita handheld and finish it on their console later.
Sony said today that the PlayStation Vita will launch in time for the holidays, though the company didn’t get more specific. The Wi-Fi model will retail for $250 at launch, the model that will support AT&T’s 3g service will cost $300.
No Suite Detail
Sony reps mentioned, but did not offer any additional details regarding PlayStation Suite, which will bring PlayStation content to Android-powered smartphones.