PlayStation 5 Handheld Looks Even Goofier Than Expected In Leak

The PlayStation 5 is absolutely killing it right now. Record-breaking hardware sales? Check. A steady stream of popular and critically praised exclusives? Check. Customizable faceplates? Check, check, check. So of course it’s gearing up to release one of the most absurd handhelds ever to reach the manufacturing assembly line. Project Q, its recently revealed remote play handheld, has leaked out in the wild and it looks and functions exactly like you’d expect a DualSense controller with an 8-inch screen on it to.

Leaked footage of the device in action was shared online over the weekend by tech enthusiast account Zuby. Short videos and a few photos revealed what appeared to be an Android-based operating system as well as an inside view of some of its internals. But the thing I can’t get over is just how funny it looks. Project Q really is just a DualSense split in two with an LCD tablet grafted onto it. It’s 2023 and Sony, at the height of its gaming prowess, decided to make its own Wii U gamepad.

An endless barrage of memes made this exact point when Sony officially unveiled the PS5 accessory in a throwaway segment right before Spider-Man 2 took the stage at its May showcase. But actually seeing the thing in someone’s hands as they flick between home screen icons is like the difference between seeing the juicy 8-ounce sirloin on the Applebee’s menu and watching someone pick at it on their plate in a TikTok video (as many have noted, the final layer of UI is likely to be more PlayStation-ized by release).

Look, I love handhelds, and I’m excited to see what Project Q can offer. Can I stream Final Fantasy VII Rebirth at 60fps uninterrupted while in bed? Can I do that for under $300? Or more preferably, just north of $200? If so, I’m on board, no matter how silly the device itself seems, or how niche the market for it is. It’s not like I’ll actually be able to leave the house with it anyway, given the reported 3-4 hour battery life and generally terrible state of WiFi and mobile internet in the U.S.

Sony has said the device will launch later this year, though gaming insider Tom Henderson has pointed to November 2023 as the more specific target. Just in time for the “All I Want for Xmas is A Project Q” redux.


Sony’s PS5 Remote Play Gaming Handheld Is Just $200

On August 23, Sony delivered some news that’s sure to get PS Vita fans mildly interested: Sony is back in the handheld game (kind of) via a dedicated remote play streaming device that’ll beam pixels from your PS5 straight to your hands. It’s called the PlayStation Portal remote player and it will cost you $200.

Back in May, Sony gave us a sneak peek at “Project Q,” an upcoming handheld device that looked like someone took a bandsaw to a DualSense controller to fuse a screen to it. Using the PS5’s Remote Play feature that lets you stream a game running on your PS5 to a smartphone or PC, the device was billed as a way to take your PS5 games with you while still using DualSense controller features, provided you had access to Wi-Fi and, of course, had your PS5, somewhere, plugged in, turned on, and connected to the internet. Today, that device has been officially unveiled via a blog update from Sony, losing its the Project Q delineation and gaining the title PlayStation Portal remote player. Less snappy.

Read More: PlayStation 5 Handheld Looks Even Goofier Than Expected In Leak

Sony states that the PlayStation Portal remote player will include the full features of the DualSense controller: adaptive triggers and the device’s signature haptic feedback. It also sports a 3.5mm audio jack (thank god), and will use an 8-inch LCD screen to beam a streamed 1080p image at 60fps into your eyes.

A PlayStation Portal shows a homme screen and Astro.

Photo: Sony

But while the device does look rather snazzy, it’s important to reiterate that, unlike products like the Nintendo Switch, or portable PCs like Valve’s Steam Deck, the PlayStation Portal remote player (PSPRP?) can’t run games locally. In order to use it you will need to be connected to the internet and so will your PS5 back home. Sony says that this requires a wireless internet connection with at least 5Mbps, but that 15Mbps is ideal.

The device will not use any local processing power to run a game aside from what’s required to transfer a streamed image. Sony gave no details about what is under the hood of the PlayStation Portal remote player.

Sony also revealed some new official PlayStation headsets along with the announcement, with a set of earbuds (named Pulse Explore) and over-ears headphones (Pulse Elite) that will retail for $200 and $150 respectively. And if you’re planning to use your PlayStation Portal remote player wirelessly, you will need these as notably, Sony’s upcoming handheld will not use Bluetooth, instead favoring the company’s own wireless audio technology.

The PlayStation Portal remote player launches on November 15, 2023.

Update 9/1/2023 at 9:30 a.m. ET: Added the launch date of the PlayStation Portal.

Update 8/23/2023 at 11:00 a.m. ET: Added a detail to indicate that the PlayStation Portal remote player will not support audio over Bluetooth.

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