The next iteration of a portable PlayStation device may not be far off, as the PlayStation Phone, the rumored hybrid gaming and phone device developed by Sony Ericsson, will reportedly be available in the U.S. this spring.
Previous reports have indicated that the phone will feature slide-out controls and a marketplace for downloadable games, akin to Sony’s PSP Go, but it seems that the similarities end there.
The thumbstick control scheme is eliminated and instead, there is a touch-sensitive tracking pad in the middle between the D-pad on the left and the 4 control buttons on the right. UMD and Memory Sticks appear to have been kicked to the curb as well, with no slots for either of the media formats.
In terms of what’s under the hood, the PlayStation Phone will supposedly sport a 1 GHz Qualcomm CPU, 512 MB of RAM, and 1 GB of ROM, and a screen that will be between 3.7 to 4.1 inches.
If this device really does run Google’s mobile operating system, it will be able to handle much more than gaming, as it will come with a web browser, email apps, music and video players, and lots more software.
While there is a fair amount of information available about Sony’s smartphone, the company has yet to officially confirm the PlayStation Phone. So, whether or not the thing is even real remains to be seen.
But if the rumors about a spring release are true, the timing would be perfect for Sony to finally make the announcement at CES 2011 in early January.