Meet the PlayStation 5G, an upgraded successor to the handheld Sony PS Vita

It’s a theoretically perfect bridge between Sony’s PlayStation gaming brand, and its Xperia smartphone brand.

While the company’s facing severe chip shortages, leading to high demand but throttled supply, this conceptual Playstation 5G would be a perfect way to quench the demand while allowing Sony’s entire PlayStation catalog to go mobile. Designed by New York-based Anesthétique Projets, the Sony PlayStation 5G concept shrinks the gaming console into a nice, portable design, and in the meanwhile, creates the perfect rival to the Nintendo Switch Lite.

It’s difficult to look past that Switch Lite visual comparison because, in its essence, that’s really what the PS5G is. However, the PS5G comes with some notable upgrades – An incredibly slim, almost smartphone-like design, a multiple-camera setup, and 5G capabilities. Is it a smartphone? Is it a gaming console? Does it run a PS-themed version of Android? Based solely off these renders, I really can’t tell… but let’s dig in further.

It’s been rumored that Sony’s working on a cloud-gaming platform to rival Google Stadia and Microsoft Xbox Game Pass. Codenamed ‘PlayStation Now’, it brings all of the popular PS titles to your smartphone, allowing you to game in a device-agnostic fashion. Given that mobile gaming is now the most popular gaming format in the world, it really makes sense. In that regard, it would also be sensible to conclude that the PlayStation 5G is more of a console/smartphone hybrid. Would that dilute or hurt the Xperia brand? Probably. Would it really be a bad thing? I don’t think so.

An Android smartphone/gaming-console wouldn’t be a bad thing. The PS reputation has enough weight to really create the demand needed to make this popular. Besides, the PlayStation 5G concept has a nice large touchscreen, a slim form factor, physical controls, and a powerful multi-lens camera that sort of makes it feel like the best of both worlds. Just plug a SIM card in, connect to a 5G network, and you can play console-level games practically anywhere. The presence of a 5G network could potentially help the device overcome the hiccups that Google Stadia currently faces, and just like every smartphone has a killer feature (it’s usually always the camera), the PlayStation 5G’s killer feature would pitch it against more gaming-prone smartphones like the ASUS ROG Phone, or the more recent Lenovo Legion Duel 2 Phone. The PlayStation 5’s secret sauce? Its ability to play PS titles… and also those physical controls.

The controls are what makes the PlayStation 5G a bonafide gaming phone. It comes equipped with all the buttons, a D-Pad, action keys, two joypads, and even the L1/L2 and R1/R2 shoulder buttons. The device also comes with front-firing speakers and TWO front facing cameras, located on the top left and top right of the screen as you hold it in landscape mode. It even comes with a dedicated PS button, an option button, and a share button, giving you everything you need in a handheld gaming device. The charging port is located on the bottom of the phone as you hold it in landscape mode, allowing you to charge without the cable getting in the way of your grip.

Given its conceptual nature, there’s little clarity on the phone’s OS and that camera module. It would be safe to assume that the PS5G runs a version of Android tailored to Sony’s specifications… and that camera module looks like it has at least 5 lenses (if you look real close), along with Zeiss branding on it. That would basically help Sony do two things. A. Blow the Nintendo Switch out of the water, and B. Get more people to adopt and test out its camera system, which tends to get ignored along with the Xperia lineup.

While my heart really wishes this device were real, sadly it’s just a concept. Sure, there are a few grey areas as far as the features and technicalities are concerned (Is there a headphone jack? What’s the battery life? And will this phone also be able to run Google Stadia and Microsoft Xbox Game Pass?) but at least on paper, the PlayStation 5G would really help Sony sell more handheld devices while quelling the high demand for the PS5 and eventually even getting more people aboard its ambitious ‘PlayStation Now’ platform. Go ahead, Sony. I know you want to build this. After all, you definitely have a reputation for building odd devices.

Designer: Anesthétique Projets

Bang & Olufsen’s new $499 wireless headphones deliver a knockout blow to the Airpods Max

Some could say that these headphones really deliver a ‘Bang’ for their buck!

At $499, the B&O Beoplay HX aren’t cheap headphones. They carry the Bang & Olufsen tag (which does account for a slightly inflated price), but then again, the Beoplay HX are a solid piece of gear. They’re over-ear, active noise-canceling, have 40mm audio drivers, and come with an impressive 35-hour battery life. If you delve down into the details, they sport metallic accents too (although the body is primarily plastic), and even have a much better-looking protective case than the AirPods Max. Feature-for-feature, the Beoplay HX seem like they were designed to compete with the AirPods Max… and probably even win.

The wireless over-ear headphones have the highest battery-life in their category (with the AirPods Max falling short by 10 hours, and the Sony WH-1000XM4 by 5). They’re outfitted with ANC (active noise-canceling) on the inside, and when the feature’s switched off, the headphones last well beyond 40 hours on a single charge. The headphones come in black (with an all-white variant launching in a month), featuring a body made from recycled plastic, capped off with a radial-brushed aluminum disc. The ear-cups are made from lambskin with a memory foam interior, while the headband uses a combination of cowhide and knitted fabric… and the adjustable sliding mechanism is all-aluminum, offering low-tolerance, sleek adjustability like the AirPods Max. However, unlike the AirPods Max, the Beoplay HX are pretty traditional with their UI, with buttons on the left and right ear cup and even a touch-sensitive panel on the right side. The headphones support Bluetooth 5.1, although there’s even a 3.5mm jack if you’re a bit of a purist!

Designer: Bang & Olufsen

Sony’s absurd electric-shaver-shaped wireless speaker can fill your entire room with rich sound

When you think of smart speakers, Sony is a brand that’s name really doesn’t come to mind. The company never really invested its efforts in the smart-speaker game, or even in developing its own Voice AI the way Samsung and other Asian tech companies did. As fashionably late as Sony may be to the party, at least it knows how to make a grand entrance. The company just unveiled its series of premium wireless speakers, the SRS-RA3000 and the SRS-RA5000… and while those names aren’t really catchy, you could just call the SRS-RA5000 the shaver speaker, because well, just look at it.

The speaker’s design is a function of its audio driver layout. It features a 70mm subwoofer in its base, and six full-range 46mm drivers laid out around the sides and the top (quite similar to Amazon’s Echo Studio and the now obsolete Apple HomePod). Together, these drivers push out sound upward and outward, creating what Sony describes as “ambient room-filling sound”. Sony’s even outfitted the speaker with two microphones, but they aren’t for your voice. Rather, the microphones help the speaker automatically calibrate its sound based on where you place it in the room, allowing for it to adjust how the speaker throws sound when placed in a corner of the space versus the center. Although, if you do want your smart speaker to respond to voice commands, the SRS-RA5000 is compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

Sony’s speaker works over Bluetooth and WiFi, and is even compatible with Spotify Connect and Chromecast Audio. The speakers are optimized for Sony’s 360 Reality Audio format, which can ‘upscale’ regular tracks to make them sound more rich and immersive, although this feature currently works only with selected platforms like Tidal, Deezer, and Amazon Music HD. For other streaming services and offline music sources, Sony’s thrown in its DSEE technology which greatly improves the sound of compressed audio or lossy MP3s. Oh yes, I did say offline music, because the speaker even sports its own 3.5mm jack that lets you hook it up to analog audio sources like your iPod, a turntable, or even your TV! The Sony SRS-RA5000 is available for pre-order and is expected to ship as early as the first week of April… although it’s difficult to see past that electric-shaver-inspired design, and its $700 price tag!

Designer: Sony

Sony’s new PS5 VR controllers come with adaptive triggers and haptic feedback, defining the next generation of gaming!

Virtual Reality brings gamers right into the world of video games in a way no other gaming technology can. With VR headsets and controllers only rising in popularity, gaming has never been as visceral as it is today. Most major video game brands are gearing up their systems to accommodate VR playing, including Sony’s PlayStation. Today, the team at Sony revealed their new VR controllers for the PS5, their latest console, which comes equipped with VR integration, and boy, do we love how futuristic and almost conceptual these designs look – just how we always envisioned VR controllers would look like!

Building upon their previously released DualSense wireless controller, which changed the way games “feel” through immersive haptic feedback, the new VR controller for the PS5 also provides haptic feedback and takes on an orb-like shape that allows users to move their hands freely and naturally when gaming. The ergonomic design behind the new VR controller was also tested by a range of users with different hand sizes to ensure that they work for everyone. In addition to the controller’s added haptic feedback, the new VR controllers are outfitted with the same adaptive trigger technology found on the DualSense wireless controllers. The adaptive trigger buttons on Sony’s VR controllers add tension that gamers can really feel when plucking an arrow or pulling on a rope, adding to the multisensory experience of PS5.

Sony made it so the new VR controllers can detect a user’s fingers without them having to press the controller where their fingers are resting, so gamers can move through each game following their gut instinct. Each VR controller is also tracked by the new VR headset through the controller’s tracking ring, which can be found at the bottom of each controller. With more news soon to be released including the launch of the new VR headset, for now, prototypes of the new VR controllers will be tested out by Sony’s development community for further improvements and to test new ideas on the world of VR.

Designer: Sony x PlayStation

“There are no constraints with how you’re moving your hands, providing developers with the ability to create unique gameplay experiences,” says Senior Vice President at PlayStation, Hideaki Nishino

With adaptive triggers, haptic feedback, and finger-touch detection, the new VR controllers from PlayStation amplify the VR experience.

“The Left controller contains one analog stick, the triangle, and square buttons, a “grip” button (L1), trigger button (L2) and Create button. The Right controller contains one analog stick, the cross and circle buttons, a “grip” button (R1), trigger button (R2) and Options button,” says Nishino

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