It seems rumors and reports on the PSP 2 will continue and persist until Sony unveils the device itself. At least, if there is anything left for Sony to actually announce about the product whenever they finally feel like it is time. There were reports that the device is going to have some kind of touch interface, and rumors about a PSP Phone, along with reports that select developers already have dev kits for the machine and that it is a powerful handheld. At this point it seems the question is not "if" Sony is going to release the PSP 2, but rather, "when" and what features it will actually have.
The current batch of rumors reportedly come from a private meeting Sony held at its offices around the time of the Tokyo Game Show, where they allegedly showed off the PSP 2. The biggest news from this set of rumors may be that Sony is looking to launch the device in the fall of 2011. Other pieces of information leaking from the supposed meeting include the rumored touch panel on the back of the device is real and is similar to a trackpad found on laptop computers, that the device will have dual-analog sticks -- something PSP gamers have been asking for almost since the original's launch -- and just like the original was known for its large, sharp screen, the PSP 2 is rumored to pack an even larger, sharper screen. A screen Sony supposedly has called "HD".
While some developers may, in fact, have some kind of PSP 2 dev kit to play with, these current rumors suggest that while Sony is sure of what they want the PSP 2 to do, that they are still playing with its actual components and apparently are having trouble balancing battery, power, and heat issues.
The PSP 2 seems like a very real thing, and the Fall 2011 release date might be a real one, it would appear there could still be a lot of important work to be done before the device gets into gamers' hands. But with the Nintendo 3DS set for a February 2011 launch, it begs the question just how long Sony can sit back with no official announcement regarding the PSP 2. Maybe they will wait until right before the 3DS launches in hopes of stealing some of its spotlight. That technique has worked for Sony in the past, where a lot of big PS2 news hit right around the time the Dreamcast launched. But the 3DS is not the Dreamcast. And regardless of what Sony does, I personally think catching Nintendo in the handheld space will continue to be a tough fight.
What are your thoughts on the PSP 2 rumors? If the current rumors hold true are you excited about what you are hearing? Do you think the PSP 2, as rumored, can compete with the 3DS? Let us know your thoughts on the PSP 2 in the comments below.