At a press conference earlier today in Tokyo, Japan, it was announced that Sony will be releasing a new handheld video gaming system. It will be called the NGP, or "Next Generation Portable," and is set to be released late 2011. However, it is not yet known if that is the world-wide date or just the release date for Tokyo.

The NGP is a bit bigger than the PSP, and features the following:

  • Two standard analog sticks- one with arrows for moving and the other with shapes for different choices in each game.
  • A 5-inch OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screen (the standard is 3.5-4 inches).
  • A second touch pad on the back of the device, which, when used simultaneously with the front screen, allows for "pinching" control while in game mode.
  • A new media format for the flash-card.
  • 3G and Wi-Fi capability, front and back cameras, an electronic compass and six-axis motion-sensing abilities (all of these extra goodies were added in hopes of the NGP being bigger and better than the 3DS system and Apple's iOS devices).

What can't this new device do?!

Sony revealed a few other NGP functions, such as a location-based application that lets users find nearby players and a user-interface that ties social-networking features to every game.  The system has a new rounded form factor as well (Sony calls it the 'Super Oval Design') and is physically a bit larger than the current PSP-3000 model.

Also announced in the conference was the first handful of games that will be released along with the new device: LittleBigPlanet, Hot Shots Golf, Killzone, Resistance, WipeOut, in addition to other games from brands such a Konami, Sega, Capcom and Activision.

My quick thoughts:

This new marvel won't be out until the end of 2011, but I can guarantee that there will be people counting down the months, weeks and days until its release (and waiting in line for hours and hours to get it), which is ridiculous. Yea it sounds cool but it won't be long until the "next best thing" comes around, and then everyone will be trading in their NGP's for something better. When will we stop? When will the "next best thing" truly be the best so people can just be happy with what they have, as is?

We could be saving a ton of money, time and brain power that could be put forth finding a cure for cancer or donating to animal shelters and under-developed countries. Not to go off on a tangent but it bothers me how most Americans are so self-absorbed in technology and always want the biggest and best and can never be happy with what they're lucky enough to have. This things cool, but why not try and save/change the world?