Sony’s New PlayStation Portal $200 Is Sounding Worse The More Learned About It

By Todd Russell Sep4,2023

The first I heard about Sony’s new PlayStation Portal, it sounded like a gadget that fit a very specific niche (one TV shared with PS5 and people wanting to watch TV instead), and as even more details emerge, it’s getting even less desirable. The price point of $200 seems even more overpriced after learning what it can’t do vs. can, which seems to be a long list, via Every New Thing I Learn About PlayStation Portal Makes Me More Confused:

…for $200 you get an 8-inch LCD display that can stream at 1080p and 60fps. It is a remote play device, so you’ll need to be on the same Wi-Fi network as your PS5 to use it – no native game support whatsoever. You can stream “supported games” to the Portal, which doesn’t include VR games (obviously) or – get this – PlayStation Plus Premium’s cloud streaming games. The streaming handheld can’t stream cloud games. This is a real thing Sony is selling.

Wow, can’t even cloud stream the PS5 games locally? The author of the linked article seems geninuely confused, and totally agree. No Bluetooth, only 3-4 hours of battery life … the list goes on.

Sony is known for making quality devices, so playing PS5 for those with good eyesight, while someone else is using the 4K TV, seems to be the niche this is targeting. Tha is a common thing for my wife and I. She liked to stream Netflix on the TV and my Xbox Series X and PS5 are hooked to the same TV. But do I want to pay $200 just to sometimes play PS5 on an 8″ screen instead? Um, not sure. The Steam Deck or Nintendo Switch seems like a better option, given they won’t let me play the PS5 games. I could play PS5 games using Remote Play on my laptop, however, and that’s twice the screen real estate.

This could be a really tough sell, even for hardcore Sony PlayStation fans. No official launch date for Playstation Portal has been announced by Sony as of this writing, but they did state it would be in 2023, which means at some point in quarter 4, 2023.

UPDATE 11/18/2023 @ 2:15 AM PST: Just released and available, some users are reporting severe lag: PlayStation Portal users report unplayable levels of lag

Having only just launched, it’s understandable that there will be bugs to iron out, unlike PS Plus which should be faultless by now. However, some users are reporting unplayable levels of lag, as seen via social media.

UPDATE 11/202/2023 @ 3:40 AM PST: A counter opinion, for balance, from someone with a solid WiFi connection by Roy Mellon – I thought PlayStation Portal was pointless — here’s why I was wrong:

The PlayStation Portal is certainly a niche device that is targeting a very specific type of player, and it’s not something I’m likely to use every single day. But when the situation calls for it, I’m very pleased to have the option of playing my PS5 from anywhere (anywhere with a strong Wi-Fi connection that is), especially on such a premium feeling machine. I can also envision it becoming borderline essential for those who don’t have the luxury of being in full control of the television they use to play their PS5. While I can’t recommend the PlayStation Portal without some caveats — there is always the possibility that your experience won’t mirror mine …

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