Next gen PSP to have touch controls -- on the wrong side?

Touchscreen controls are nice for some applications but, until someone invents transparent fingers, they're a real bother for gaming. Many, including Apple, have toyed with the idea of putting the touch sensitive sections on the back of the device, and we have strong rumors coming out of Gamescom this week that this is the path Sony is taking for its next-generation PSP. Now, we've been hearing various rumors about this thing for just about as long as we've known about the first-gen PSP, but Sony is said to be quietly showing off a prototype unit about the size of a PSP-3000. While everyone agrees about the touch-sensitive portion 'round the back, it's unknown what (if any) physical controls will go along with it. A release date for the thing is also unclear, with some saying next year and others saying it'll be later than that. Whenever it ships we hope it'll do the right thing and finally put the UMD format out of its misery.