At their E3 news briefing, Sony have revealed the PlayStation Portable design which will be used when the device goes on sale during 2005.


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Several minor design changes have been made from the early concept images released late last year, with the replacement of smooth flat buttons for more standard control-pad style buttons with full relief. Elsewhere changes to the case shape are also obvious, especially in the corners of the device where chunks have been removed to match up with the styling used for the strap loop.

The most striking feature of the PSP is it's huge 16:9 widescreen LCD display, which will be able to show a full 16.7 million colours at a resolution of 480x272 pixels.


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Connectivity seems a major factor which Sony want to incorporate in to the PSP, and it will feature not only a USB 2.0 port, but also 802.11b WiFi wireless networking - opening up the possibility as with Nintendo's DS to take part in global online gaming over the internet as long as you are within range of a wireless access point. A port for Sony's Memory Stick Duo will also feature allowing for software and data storage.

PlayStation Portable games will be supplied on tiny 60mm Universal Media Disc's as previously announced by Sony at E3 2003, but the company have also announced that these game discs will have a region lock meaning you can only use games ment for the specific region of sale - a blow for global travellers who will want to use their PSP where ever they go and with games bought whilst on holiday abroad.

A number of official Sony accessories are also planned for the PlayStation Portable, including a stand, case, strap and headphone with microphone. Three prototype add-on devices for the future are also being show at E3, in the form of a USB Camera, USB Global Positioning Satellite system, and a USB Keyboard for PSP.

Sony expect the PlayStation Portable to be launched in Japan at the end of 2004, with an American and European release to follow a couple of months later in 2005, however pricing details of hardware and software are yet to be confirmed.

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