Sony Device Has Game, Not Much Video

Sony’s newest consumer gadget has “TV” right there in the name, but there’s nothing TV-like about it based on the amount of video content it has on offer in the early going.

The PlayStation TV, Sony’s new $99.99 gaming and media-streaming device, went on sale in North America last Tuesday (Oct. 14), offering a limited set of video-streaming apps: Crackle, Sony’s own ad-based video-on-demand service; Crunchyroll and Qello.

The typical crop of OTT apps, such as Netflix and Hulu Plus, can be downloaded to the PlayStation TV, but reviewers discovered that those apps are not compatible with the device, at least not yet.

Still, Sony promised that much more entertainment content will be added to the mix down the road, meaning the PS TV could eventually morph into a product that more closely rivals the Roku platform, the Apple TV box, Amazon’s Fire TV and devices powered by Google’s new Android TV platform.

As future content goes, one possible candidate is Sony’s coming pay TV service, which is slated for public testing by the end of the year. Sony hasn’t revealed the content lineup or pricing, or whether the service will be compatible with the PS TV, but it has announced a distribution deal with Viacom.

For now, the PS TV is more of a gaming device than a conduit for video. The PS TV’s Remote Play feature, for example, will let users play games made for the PlayStation 4 from a different room, and supports titles from the PS Vita, PSone, PSP and PlayStation 3.

Sony is also selling a PS TV bundle for $139.99 that comes with the device, a DualShock 3 controller, an 8-Gigabyte memory card and a voucher for The Lego Movie Videogame.

On the technical end, the PlayStation TV sports a High-Definition Multimedia Interface out connection (supporting 480p, 720p and 1080i video), one USB 2.0 port, integrated 802.11 b/g/n, and 1 gigabyte of internal memory.