Sony's NGP is a very, very powerful handheld with a quad-core processor, two cameras, twin analog sticks, a touchscreen and rear touchpad and more. It's basically a PS3 in your pocket. Now there's word that Sony is cutting specs left and right before the handheld is launched to compete head-to-head with Nintendo's 3DS.
Well, this sounds a little familiar, doesn't it? Sony makes a beefy video game machine, stuffing a every piece of tech you could possibly imagine in it, impresses the hats off everybody, then starts cutting features as it inches closer to launch day. Yeah, that was the story for the PlayStation 3.
According to French tech blog, 01.net, Sony will slash half of the NGP's original 512MB of RAM down to 256MB and remove plans for 16GB of internal storage. Instead, Sony will opt for "cheaper external storage" which sounds a lot like a way for them to shoehorn their own memory cards down gamer's throats, again.
Frankly, cutting the RAM shouldn't matter too much, so long as game performance doesn't take a nosedive. We're expecting the NGP to be a multi-tasking fiend, and as such, plenty of RAM is necessary (most new smartphones come with at least 512MB and many are moving over to 1GB).
By cutting the NGP's technical oomph, Sony will be able to sell the portable for about $250-$300. At $250, the NGP would be able to stomp all over Nintendo's 3DS territory, while touting its own powerful advantage. And at $300, the NGP wouldn't cost as much as a PS3 did, back when it launched for $500 and $600.
Sony's NGP is still on track for a release by the end of this year despite an earlier report that suggested production would be delayed due to a shortage of available parts caused by the earthquake in Japan. E3 is right around the corner, so it's still anybody's guess if more features will face the axe, but let's hope Sony doesn't cut all the good stuff out, like lowering its screen-resolution or dropping the OLED in favor of an LCD, because that would really suck.