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PSP2 rumor points to PS3 ports, 'early' PS3-level graphics

IGN is the latest outlet to claim an inside source with hands-on experience handling Sony's latest rumored handheld, the so-called PSP2. While IGN's source doesn't contribute much to the overall impression we've assembled so far, it lends further credence to the rumored featureset (and also corroborated the previously leaked image, seen above): dual analog sliders, a UMD-less PSP Go-style slider design, a rear-mounted touch panel, a "slightly larger touch-enabled display" and both front- and rear-facing cameras.

What is new from this particular source are impressions of the portable's power. IGN reports that the processor is "just over half as powerful as the PS3" and should be capable of producing "graphics comparable to early PlayStation 3 titles." The lower resolution screen will surely help minimize the quality gap between the PS3's beefy innards and whatever's powering the PSP2 so then, the question is how Sony distinguishes its gaming lineup if both consoles are graphically competitive. IGN says, "It seems that Sony aims to allow developers to port or custom-tailor PlayStation 3 titles for use on the handheld, potentially to create a ubiquitous gameplay experience that could sync seamlessly between the console and the handheld."

This, of course, leads to the long-imagined "start a game at home and take it with you" model that executives, and some particularly obsessed gamers, have long dreamt about (remember the Dreamcast VMU?). Better technology was never enough to put the original PSP at the top of the handheld gaming charts and with competition from the 3DS and, more notably, smartphone platforms like the iPhone, Android, Windows Phone 7 and even the also-rumored PlayStation Phone, it raises the obvious question: Does anyone want a PS3 in their pocket?

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