The supposed “PS3 level” power of Sony’s newly announced NGP is being called into question, with technical analysis of its capabilities suggesting it is not nearly as impressive as it is hyped to be, and that it is already in imminent danger of being eclipsed by smartphones and tablets using the very same chipset it employs.
The commentary in question, from a long and quite technical analysis of the NGP announcement:
Will the NGP’s lifespan be a long one?
Put simply, the NGP’s looks feature packed and very powerful, more than enough to meet the challenge of other handhelds and smartphones. SCE appears to be investing a lot in the NGP from the start, in order to put up a good fight.
However, if we look past the hype, the capabilities of the NGP are not actually all that good. Of course, there is no way it approaches those of the PS3 either.
One major issue is that the combo of ARM Cortex-A CPU + PowerVR SGX GPU is already becoming a popular choice in smartphones and tablets. In other words, the NGP’s performance is directly comparable to those of smartphones and tablets.
This time, SCE could simply not afford the cost of developing its own CPU and GPU combo, and had to bring in a pre-existing architecture.
As a result, just looking at the chipset used shows that the uniqueness of its capabilities has been severely compromised, exposing it to comparison with similar chips.
Other devices using similar chipsets will quickly overtake it – the progress of other mobile devices is just so rapid.
[The article goes on to present some technical analysis of the NGP’s CPU and GPU, suggesting the NGP may become obsolete very quickly:]
The yearly updates of smartphones and tablets probably doom a static specification like that of the NGP to obsolescence within a few short years, leaving the hardware to compete solely on the quality of its controller, or in the case of the 3DS, its gimmicky display – time will tell whether this proves sufficient.