PlayStation Portal will launch at $199 this year – Sony explains who it’s for

The PSP is back?

PlayStation Portal.

Sony previously unveiled its plans to release a handheld streaming device codenamed Project Q. After a period of silence, we’ve now gotten a better glimpse of the device and its specs. The streaming device’s official name is the PlayStation Portal, and it is set to launch this year with a $199.99 price tag.

The handheld has many of the immersive features of the DualSense controller, including haptic feedback and adaptive triggers. It’ll also sport an 8-inch LCD screen capable of 1080p resolution at 60 FPS.

PlayStation Portal with Astro's Playroom.
Image via Sony.

Who’s the PlayStation Portal for?

According to Sony, the Portal is for people “in households where they might need to share their living room TV or simply want to play PS5 games in another room of the house.” This is a feature that has been available since at least the PS3. Remote play has only become more accessible since then, and you can easily take advantage of this feature on PCs, mobile devices, and tablets.

Perhaps the biggest benefit comes with the DualSense features which will ensure you can have the full PS5 experience even when you’re not on your couch. A few publications have had hands-on experience with the remote play device. IGN reveals that you won’t have to be connected to the same network as your PS5, which means you’ll be able to use the device anywhere as long as your PS5 is on and connected to the net.

If you’re interested in the Portal, you should be aware that there are some limitations. Most notably, it lacks Bluetooth, you won’t be able to play VR2 games on it, and it can’t access PlayStation Plus Premium’s cloud streaming. There are also general issues that arise with remote play, including latency issues and the need for a constant internet connection. Lastly – and this should be stressed – it is purely a remote play device not capable of running any games locally. If you’re not connected to the internet, it is useless.

The lack of Bluetooth likely isn’t an oversight, as Sony will be using PlayStation Link wireless audio technology which “delivers low latency, lossless audio and easy switching between multiple PlayStation Link hosts such as PS5 with the USB adapter and PlayStation Portal.” Conveniently for Sony, this appears to limit users to using PlayStation Link-compatible headsets, or settling for wired ones. It’s hard to not cringe at this choice, as the push for proprietary peripherals such as memory cards played a role in the death of PlayStation’s handheld devices.

There are still a few unknowns surrounding the device. Its battery life hasn’t been confirmed, nor is there an official release date. The Pulse Elite and Pulse Explore headsets – which, as you’d suspect, leverage PlayStation Link – are also set to release this year, though no release date has been given.

About The Author
Smangaliso Simelane
Staff Writer - Smangaliso Simelane is a writer with a passion for all things related to video games. He has been writing about video games since 2020.
More Stories by Smangaliso Simelane