Many of you will harbour fondness for the PS Vita and its predecessor the PSP, and understandably so – both were superb portable systems. But with the likelihood of Sony making another extremely low, this may just be the next best thing: an officially licensed Backbone One, which works in tandem with an iPhone and the PS Remote Play app to allow you to enjoy your PS5 and PS4 wherever you are.
Some of you will be familiar with this product, but for those of you who aren’t, it’s essentially a chassis for your smartphone that includes traditional controls. In this instance, the product has been endorsed by PlayStation, so you get the console’s iconic face buttons and a colour scheme that closely matches the design ethos of the DualSense.
“The elegant colours, materials, and finishes are all inspired by the design of the PS5 console’s DualSense wireless controller, including transparent face buttons and a visually distinctive floating appearance,” the press release points out. It also notes that the PS Remote Play app has been recently updated to even allow you to wake up your console whatever you are.
In addition, Backbone has its own app which recommends content from a variety of different platforms, including Apple Arcade. This will dovetail with the PlayStation app, incorporating “a dedicated row with new releases and updates” directly from Sony. You’ll even be able to download and install games remotely from here, ready to play in the PS Remote Play app.
Now obviously none of this is a replacement for native gameplay, as your Remote Play experience will be heavily dependent on your connection. But for those slower-paced visual novels, having all the traditional PlayStation inputs available makes this a viable portable gaming option – and, of course, it will all work with mobile games that support controllers, too.
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One other thing worthy of note is that the Backbone One doesn’t require a battery or charging: it pulls a “negligible” amount of power directly from your phone, so it’s something you can easily toss into your bag without really needing to think about. Personally, we reckon this is a pretty nifty idea, and we love the aesthetic of this officially licensed PlayStation edition. Will you be checking this out at all?