Which handheld console to choose?
Nintendo and Sony are competing to create game consoles for people on the move. The question is which one to choose.
by Sigrun Landro Thomassen
Nintendo DS (Dual Screen or Developers' System) and Nintendo DSi both have support for 3D graphics and dual screen display. The bottom screen is pressure sensitive, and the included stylus helps you to control games. Both DS and DSi have a microphone, but as DS only uses the microphone in some games, you can also record sound with the DSi. Nintendo DS supports games developed for the predecessor Game Boy Advance, but on the DSi this opportunity is no longer available. In addition, the more advanced DSi has a built-in web browser and a download service for games.
Nintendo DSi also has two cameras, one facing the user and one located on the outside of the DSi case. With these you can take pictures of yourself and other things, and you can also edit the photos you take. In some games you can even use the camera to control the game using gestures.
Most games for the Nintendo DS and DSi are designed for children and the whole family. Famous characters as Mario, Zelda and Pokemon are the stars in some of the available games, and the game selection in general is very large.
Sony's handheld consoles are called PSP (PlayStation Portable) and PSPgo. These have a widescreen LCD display, which graphics wise is similar to PlayStation 2, and thus the PSP consoles are superior to Nintendo DS in terms of graphics. The PSP's target groups are mostly youths and adults, both with regard to the technical qualities of the machine and when it comes to game selection. Common game titles for the PSP consoles are amongst others Little Big Planet, FIFA and Grand Turismo.
With the new PSPgo you have access to the Internet, and games are bought by downloading them from the PlayStation Store. The advantage of this is that you don’t have to bring all your game discs when you’re on the move. On the other hand it is a huge disadvantage that you cannot play your old PSP games on a new PSPgo console.
The PSPgo also allows you to surf the web, listen to music and chat via Skype and similar programs.
Different target groups
Nintendo DS has by far the largest selection of games, especially for children, and with its touch-sensitive screen it is an exciting game machine. If you want to buy a handheld console for your children, Nintendo DS is the best choice.
The PSP on the other hand, has better graphics, but a smaller selection of games. For older children and youths the good graphics and the available game titles make PSP a good choice.