Sony Ericsson’s long-rumored PlayStation Phone, dubbed the Xperia Play, will debut in the U.S. this March via Verizon. Over 50 games including Assassin’s Creed II, Dead Space and The Sims 3 will be available at launch.
Featuring a 4-inch multi-touch display, 5MP digital camera and 1GHz Snapdragon processor capable of 60 frames-per-second (read: comfortably fast) play, the “PlayStation Certified” device runs on the Android 2.3 operating system (a.k.a. Gingerbread). Additional specs include WiFi hotspot functionality, expandable microSD storage and 5 ½ hours of battery life or 8 hours of talk time on one battery charge.
Sporting slide-out buttons, shoulder buttons, two analog touch inputs and a directional pad, the handset should present console gaming fans with a familiar control setup. Over 20 game publishers such as Electronic Arts, Glu Mobile and Gameloft are on-board to provide content for it. The portable system will also support classic PlayStation games, available via Android Marketplace, and ship with several preloaded titles. It will additionally host the first multiplayer version of FIFA 10 for smartphones.
Arriving on the heels of Sony’s Next Generation Portable (NGP) announcement, and compatible with the PlayStation Suite software platform, it appears a stopgap measure designed to bridge the gap between casual and hardcore, mobile and set-top players. One of many phones expected to support PlayStation branding, whether fans will rally to enjoy upgrades of Android games such as Super KO Boxing 2 instead of new PS3- or PSP-quality experiences remains undetermined.