PS3, meet PSP
Nothing makes me happier than when a company creates synergy between multiple products in their line - not just that they work well with each other, but that when they're used together, new and exciting opportunities become available. Sony has done just that with the PS3 and the PlayStation Portable (PSP) in a feature called Remote Play. After you link your PSP to your PS3 (similar to entering a Wired Equivalent Privacy, or WEP, key into an encrypted Wi-Fi network), you can wirelessly stream photos, music and videos - including HD content - to the PSP or access the PS3's Web browser from it. (Blu-ray Discs in the PS3 aren't available for Remote Play, at least not yet.)
This feature currently requires the PSP to be within Wi-Fi range of the PS3, but Sony has bigger plans for the future. Imagine being anywhere in the world and streaming media from your PS3? Very cool!
At a demo at Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2006, Sony showed another super-cool possibility for Remote Play. A PSP was used as a rearview mirror for the onscreen action in a driving game. Just think about the possibilities: The PSP could be used to look around corners in shooters or be a "yardage" book in Tiger 08 or deliver video messages from base in Rainbow Six.
All in all, the PS3 offers tremendous bang for the buck. Though not revolutionary, its slate of launch titles is mostly impressive. When games such as Gran Turismo, Metal Gear, and SOCOM make their next-gen debuts, it will be even more irresistible. If you're on the Blu-ray/HD DVD fence, the PS3 could be just the push needed to sway you. For $400 less than other Blu-ray players, you also get a phenomenal game system. Even if you aren't a gamer, it's damn tempting.
But if you aren't in it for the movies, then your decision is far more difficult. At $200 more than the Xbox 360, the Sony PlayStation 3 game console still has a lot of convincing to do. Sure, it has the cojones to live up to the price difference and the processing and storage to take gaming beyond anything we've seen yet. But only time will tell whether it lives up to its full potential.
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