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The PlayStation brand is a line of gaming systems developed by Sony. First introduced on the 3rd of December, 1994 in Japan, the PlayStation brand now spans 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th generation gaming consoles. The brand currently possesses 3 video game console systems, an online service, a media center, a series of controllers, 2 hand-held gaming systems and a phone, plus several magazines. The 1st gaming system in the series, the PlayStation, was the 1st console in the world to ship 100,000,000 systems nine years and six months after its launch. The PlayStation-2, the next console produced by Sony after the PlayStation-1, is currently the best-selling video game system in the world, with more than 150,000,000 systems having been sold as of January 31st, 2011. The PlayStation-3, Sony’s latest console, has already sold over 55,000,000 units. The first PlayStation hand-held gaming console, the PSP (stands for PlayStation Portable) has already sold over 67.8 million consoles worldwide. The successor to the PSP, the PlayStation Vita, will be released within the first quarter of 2010 in the United States.
Other types of hardware that have been released under the PlayStation. The PSX, was a digital camcorder that was integrated with both the PS1 and PS2 consoles, although it didn’t see much success due to it’s huge price tag and was not released anywhere except for Japan. The Sony Bravia was a TV that was integrable with the PS2 game console. The main line of controllers for the PlayStation game console series is the DualShock, a vibration-feedback controller that has sold over 28,000,000 units since the 28th of June, 2008.
The PSN (which stands for PlayStation Network) is Sony’s online service, which has over 69,000,000 users from around the world since January 25th, 2011. It includes the PlayStation store, an online virtual market (which allows users to buy and download games and other types of multimedia), PlayStation Plus (an online service that’s subscription-based), and a gaming network service known as the PlayStation Home, which currently has more than 14,000,000 users from around the world. The PlayStation Suite is a software framework currently in development that is designed to provide PlayStation content cross-devices and cross-platform; though so far only support for the PlayStation Vita and Android devices has been developed. The content that is planned to be released under this framework currently only consists of original PS games.
New generation PS brand products also include the new XrossMediaBar, which is graphical user interface that has won multiple awards. The LiveArea, a new touch-screen based interface is currently under development for the PS Vita mobile gaming system, which combines social networking elements with an easy-to-use interface. In addition, the PS2 and earlier PS3 gaming systems also used to support Linux-based OS’s (Operating Systems), though this support is not available on newer models. The PlayStation series has been highly regarded for its many different marketing campaigns, the latest being the “Long Live Play” TV commercials in the US.
Thanks to SCEWS (Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios), the series has an impressive line of first party games. SCEWS is a group of 15 1st party developers who work for Sony and are dedicating to creating 1st party titles for the gaming console series. Additionally, the series has plenty of different bundle releases of popular games by Sony with various names for different regions, including “The Best”, Platinum, and Greatest his ranges of games.
The PlayStation 3 Gaming Console
The 3rd and most current in the PlayStation line, the PS3 was first released on the 11th of November, 2006. The PS3 gaming console competes with the Nintendo Wii and Microsoft X-box 360 gaming systems. The PS3 is the first gaming system in the PlayStation line to make use of motion-sensitive controls in games via the use of the new SIXAXIS wireless controller, as well as many other features, including BD (Blue-ray Disk) and full HD (High-Definition) resolution graphics. The PS3 has been released in 20 gigabyte, 40 gigabyte, 60 gigabyte, 80 gigabyte, 160 gigabyte, 120 gigabyte, 250 gigabyte, and 320 gigabyte versions, with the current models being available in 160GB and 320 GB versions, only. As has been the case with both the PS1 and PS2, a slimmer version of the PS3 has been released. Since the 25th of December, 2010, the PS3 gaming console has sold over 41.5 million consoles around the world according to Sony.
The PlayStation 3 Slim, a redesign of the PlayStation 3 that was released in 2009, is currently the only version that’s being produced. The redesigned version is 36 percent lighter, 33 percent smaller, and consumes up to 45 percent less power than its predecessors.
Additionally, the PlayStation-3 Slim gaming system is equipped with a newly designed cooling system and a much smaller Cell processor that was switched to a 45nm manufacturing process. Within 3 weeks of being released, the PS3 Slim gaming system sold over a million units. The newly redesigned console also supports CEC (which is usually referred to by its manufacturer titles of EasyLink, VIERA Link, BraviaSync, and several others) that allows the user to control the PS3 Slim gaming console over HDMI via remote control. The PS3 Slim gaming system is also cooler and quieter than its predecessors thanks to its 45 nm Cell. The PlayStation-3 Slim gaming system is no longer equipped with the main power switch like the previous models, which had the switch in the back. The PS3 Slim gaming system was officially released on the 1st of September, 2009 in the United States and in Europe, and on the 3rd of September, 2009 in New Zealand, Australia, and Japan.
Mobile gaming consoles
PlayStation Portable (PSP)
The PSP (PlayStation Portable) mobile gaming system was released in 2005 and became Sony’s first hand-held gaming system to compete with the DS console from Nintendo. This gaming system is the first of its kind to make use of an optical storage device that’s known as the UMD (Universal Media Disk), which is capable of storing both movies and games. The PSP has an integrated 32 megabytes of internal memory, which is expandable through PRO Memory Stick Duo cards. The PSP’s layout is like that of the PS3 console’s, including the PlayStation logo and the same buttons as those on the DualShock controllers.
2000 and 3000 variants
The PSP-2000 mobile gaming system (also referred to as the PSP Slim & Lite) was released in 2007 and was the first redesign of the PSP. The PSP-2000 was 19 percent slimmer and 33 percent lighter than its predecessor. Although the new battery had weaker capacity, the run-time was actually still the same due to the fact that the new PSP consumed less power. The batteries from the previous model will not only work on the new PSP, but will also extend playing time. The PSP-2000 has a beautiful new gloss finish. The PSP-2000 has a new serial port which can accommodate the new video out feature, though making the remote controls form its predecessors incompatible). The PSP-2000 can also be charged via USB and has buttons that are more responsive than those on the original PSP. Sony launched a second revision of the PSP in 2008 dubbed the PSP-3000. This new mobile gaming console introduced new feature not present on either of its predecessors including an upgraded screen and an integrated microphone.
PSP Go mobile gaming system
The PSP Go, which was launched in October 2009, is the biggest revision of the PSP thus far. In the PSP Go hand-held gaming system, the UMD drive is replaced by an internal flash drive which can store up to 16 gigabytes of videos, games, and other media. The storage is extendable by up to 32 gigabytes via an M2 memory stick. The PSP Go hand-held gaming system’s battery is integrated, resulting in a system that’s lighter than the PSP-1000 by 16 percent and smaller by 35 percent.
For those who cannot afford the PSP models, Sony has created the new PSP-E1000, which will retail for $99.99. The E1000 hand-held gaming system is simpler than its predecessors, and does not have stereo speakers nor Wi-Fi (the speakers were replaced by a mono speaker). The E1000 hand-held gaming system has a charcoal black matte finish, like the one on the PlayStation 3 Slim home console. The E1000 hand held gaming system was first announced in 2011 at Gamescom.
PlayStation Vita hand-held gaming system
Previously bearing the code name “NGP”, or “Next Generation Portable”, the PlayStation Vita hand-held next-generation gaming system was released in December 2011 in Asia, with a planned release in the USA and Europe in February 2012. The Vita hand-held gaming system is equipped with a four core ARM Cortex A9 MP Core processor, a touch-pad in the rear, 2 analogue sticks, and a 5” OLED touch-screen. The Vita hand-held gaming system was first announced on the 27th of January, 2011 by Sony at the 2011 PlayStation Meeting.
The first PlayStation controllers
The PlayStation control pad was released in 1994 and was the 1st controller for the PS1. It had a simple design with a D-pad, four main buttons (triangle, circle, X, and square, as well as select and start buttons on the front. The shoulder buttons, which were the early names for the L1, L2, R1, and R2 buttons (L meaning left, and R meaning right, referring to the side on which the buttons were arranged) were also arranged on top. The Analog Joystick was released by Sony for the PS1 in 1997, and was designed for flight simulation games. In 1997, the digital controller was replaced by the Dual Analog, which used the same tech as the Analog Joystick. The Dual Shock controller later replaced the Dual Analog.
Dual Shock controller series and the Sixaxis
The Dual Shock controller was released in 1998 to replace the Dual Analog, and went on to become the basis for future PlayStation controllers. Besides the standard layout of the classic controller (D-pad, Select, Start, L1,L2,R1,R2), the new controller also possessed 2 analog sticks, similar to those used on the Dual Analog controller. The Dual Shock series of controllers consists of 3 different controllers: the original Dual Shock (which was the 4th and final controller for the PS1), the Dual Shock 2 (the standard controller for the PS2), and the Dual Shock 3, designed for the PS3 gaming system and the latest of the Dual Shock series. The 1st official controller for the PS3 was Sixaxis wireless controller, but the Dual Shock 3 was developed because the Sixaxis lacked the vibration function. The PS3’s Dual Shock 3 and Sixaxis controllers do not have an option to disable the analog sticks. Starting with the Sixaxis controller, a new PlayStation Button (has the PlayStation logo and can be likened the Guide Button on the X-box 360) became standard on controllers. The PS button takes the place of the Analog button that was present on Dual Shock and Dual Shock 2 controllers. Clicking it will bring up a menu with options such as the option to end the game, change the settings, turn of the controller, and switch off the console.
The PlayStation Move Controller
The PS Move is a motion-sensitive controller for the PS3 gaming system built by SCE (Sony Computer Entertainment). The PS Move controller collaborates with the PS Eye camera to accurately mirror your motions and portray them within the game. The PS Move motion-sensitive controller was first revealed on the 2nd of June, 2009 and was launched in 2010. Despite the fact that the PS Move was built for the already existing PS3 game system, Sony announced that they are treating the debut of the PS Move as if it was a platform and plan to heavily market it. Besides selling the controllers separately, Sony is also planning to release several PS Move bundles, such as a beginner kit with the Move motion controller, PS Eye camera, and a demo CD, all for less than $100.
- Sony PlayStation PSP 3000
- Sony PlayStation PSP 3004
- Sony PlayStation PSP Go
- Sony PlayStation PS2 Slim
- Sony PlayStation PS3 160G
- Sony PlayStation PS3 320G
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