The Sony PlayStation Portal will finally offer the possibility of using Remote Play outside the home. Good news. Unfortunately, there is another bad news: the Portal does not integrate Bluetooth.
Original article from August 24, 2023:
Sony has cast doubt on the integration of the Remote Play function on their new product, the Portal. However, faced with mounting questions and speculation, Sony has clarified things: has obtained confirmation that the Remote Play function will indeed be integrated into the Portal: the service will be accessible outside the user’s local network. It can therefore be used everywhere, as long as the connection offers ” 15 Mbps throughput “. A precision that the initial press release had omitted to mention, creating great confusion.
Despite the excitement this announcement may cause, the Portal has one surprising feature: the absence of Bluetooth. This decision might seem surprising, given the ubiquity of this technology. However, all is not lost for those wishing to use wireless audio accessories. Sony does indeed offer an alternative: the Pulse Explore and Pulse Elite wireless headphones and earphones. These earphones and headphones work thanks to the system “PlayStation Link”a protocol developed by Sony itself.
Original article from August 23, 2023:
The PlayStation Portal, the latest addition to the Sony family, has been causing a stir since its announcement. And this, since it was announced, under the name Project Q. This new console, presented as a portable window at 220 euros on your PS5, might, at first glance, seem like a step up for mobile gaming. However, after its formalization, and a first grip published, its positioning on the market raises some questions, even absurdities.
We were amazed by the press release, but a preview grip confirmed what we had unfortunately understood. IGN, media of reference in the world of video games, was able to see the new PlayStation Portal, thanks to their journalist Beau Moore who went to the headquarters of PlayStation in San Mateo, California.
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A screen between two halves of a DualSense controller
The design of the PlayStation Portal is certainly innovative: it offers an 8-inch 1080p LCD screen, framed by what looks like two halves of a DualSense controller. It therefore presents itself as a miniaturized and portable version of the PS5, offering in theory the same visual and ergonomic quality. We imagine being able to play our PS5 games everywhere, and even access the cloud gaming service remotely. But the reality may well be different.
One of the major absurdities of this console is its almost total dependence on a Wi-Fi connection and a local network. Although the PlayStation Portal promises a smooth gaming experience thanks to the PS5’s Remote Play feature, this feature may well turn out to be its biggest weakness. Playing away from home is impossible : “ It is useful for those who do not want to monopolize the television or to play in another room without buying another television. “, this is what is explained by the journalist of IGN.
The absence of Bluetooth is another quirk that could turn off many potential users. At a time when most devices, from headsets to speakers, use Bluetooth, not offering this option is a surprising technological choice to say the least. It also limits the options for those who would like to enjoy a cable-free sound experience.
Furthermore, the PlayStation Portal does not provide access to cloud gaming. At a time when video game streaming is becoming more and more popular and accessible, not offering this possibility seems like a step backwards, especially for a console that wants to be modern and at the cutting edge of technology.
Several important shortcomings
The PlayStation Portal, despite its design and its promise of a portable PS5 experience, seems to suffer from several shortcomings that could well render it obsolete before it even launches. If Sony really wants to compete in the portable console market, it will have to rethink certain technological choices and offer a real mobile gaming experience. Despite everything, IGN seems generally satisfied with this first grip, while asking legitimate questions about the usefulness and performance of the PlayStation Portal in real conditions of use.
Under test conditions at Sony, IGN was seduced by the fluidity and the latent: “ The question that always hangs over all game streaming devices is always latency “. The PlayStation Portal will therefore have at least that for it. This handling of IGN on the PlayStation Portal nevertheless seems to have been polished, avoiding to address frontally the possible weak points of the product. IGN opted for a neutral approach, without venturing too much into the field of obvious defects.
In this context, it is essential to note that first impressions often only provide a partial view and can be influenced by test conditions. At Sony, everything is probably optimized to highlight the strengths of the PlayStation Portal. The real question will be how the console will behave in an everyday environment, with standard Wi-Fi connections, and in situations where latency might be an issue.
Battery life is another concern. The fact that Sony did not explicitly mention the autonomy of the PlayStation Portal raises concerns. In the past, the absence of information on this crucial point has often been a bad sign…
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