PlayStation Portal confirmed as Sony’s handheld game streaming platform

Posted on August 24, 2023

Sony’s enigmatic portable game streaming platform, first unveiled earlier this year as “Project Q”, now has a confirmed name, launch price, and more details about its specifications. The device will be called PlayStation Portal, and be priced at $199 USD, or around $310 AUD, at launch.

According to the PlayStation Blog’s announcement, the PlayStation Portal boasts an 8-inch LCD screen, which is capable of 1080p resolution at 60fps. The controller attached at the sides, which looks like a PS5 Dualsense controller cut in half, includes the many of the Dualsense’s key features, such as adaptive triggers and haptic feedback. There will also be a 3.5mm audio jack for wired audio.

The important distinguishing feature which separates the PlayStation Portal from, say, the Nintendo Switch or an ASUS ROG Ally, is that it is exclusively a streaming device to stream games from your PS5 to the Portal in the same home. This means you can’t really take it on the bus or on holidays; it is intended to be a companion device for your PlayStation 5, as opposed to a replacement.

As the blog describes it, “PlayStation Portal is the perfect device for gamers in households where they might need to share their living room TV or simply want to play PS5 games in another room of the house. PlayStation Portal will connect remotely to your PS5 over Wi-Fi**, so you’ll be able to swiftly jump from playing on your PS5 to your PlayStation Portal. PlayStation Portal can play supported games that are installed on your PS5 console and use the Dualsense controller.” Also notably, PS VR2 games, which require the headset, as well as games that are streamed through the not-available-in-Australia PlayStation Plus Premium’s cloud streaming service, are not supported.

The launch price of around $310 AUD for the PlayStation Portal might seem a bit steep considering you could get much the same outcome by taping your mobile phone to a regular Dualsense controller and streaming games via the PlayStation Remote Play app. Those who have a portable gaming PC, like the ASUS ROG Ally or Steam Deck, can also already do this via existing streaming options. It feels like a slightly awkward middle ground between portable play while still being anchored to a home console. This issue notoriously plagued the Wii U during its relatively brief lifetime. That said, gamers who enjoy PS5 console gaming but who must regularly share the living room TV with roommates or family members and want a more comfortable or affordable home streaming option than a mobile phone or portable gaming PC respectively might get some utility from it. The PlayStation Portal is set to release later this year.