Sony is gearing up for two major hardware releases next month. A brand-new PS5 revision has been announced, and leaks have pointed to a 10 November release for this console. A few days after this date, Sony will also debut the PlayStation Portal.
This device is meant to be sold as an accessory for the PS5, allowing PlayStation fans to take a console experience on the go through streaming. While it has sparked discussion about Sony’s position in the handheld market, the gaming giant appears indifferent.
Speaking to the BBC, Eric Lempel from Sony confirms that the device will not compete against the likes of Nintendo Switch and Steam Deck.
Why it matters: This handheld has received mixed reactions so far, with many PlayStation users being skeptical about its limited use cases.
Sony has made it clear that it has no intentions of competing in the handheld gaming market for now. Microsoft has similar plans, with each gaming giant focusing on their home consoles and the ecosystem around them.
Eric Lempel believes the PlayStation Portal is:
“Something unique for the PlayStation audience.”
As a handheld, this device is limited to being an add-on for the PS5. Since it does not support direct cloud streaming, users will require their main consoles to utilize the PlayStation Portal.
Because of such limitations, Sony is aware that it offers no threat to the Nintendo Switch. However, it will benefit those who are dedicated to the PlayStation ecosystem.
In addition to official headsets, controllers, monitors, and more, the streaming handheld is one more add-on that will enhance the experience for dedicated users who prefer an all-PlayStation gaming setup.
This move will also benefit Sony, allowing it to invest further in research and development for the gaming division. While the PlayStation Portal does not do anything that isn’t already possible, it provides Sony a means to directly benefit from users looking for this feature set.
We believe this approach to the handheld market is quite interesting.
Compared to a dedicated portable gaming console, Sony will not be required to produce software and games tailored to the handheld, allowing it to focus development on the PS5 while also passing on those benefits to the handheld audience.
While the PlayStation Portal was expected to receive a lukewarm response, it was quickly sold out in Japan within 24 hours. Sony believes the handheld can co-exist with dedicated portable gaming devices, and the initial sales certainly suggest that this is the case.
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Avinash is currently pursuing a Business degree in Australia. For more than three years, he has been working as a gaming journalist, utilizing his writing skills and love for gaming to report on the latest updates in the industry. Avinash loves to play action games like Devil May Cry and has also been mentioned on highly regarded websites, such as IGN, GamesRadar, GameRant, Dualshockers, CBR, and Gamespot.