The Sony PlayStation Portable has had things its own way for far too long, so thankfully iRiver has decided to pull off a glove and give it a sharp slap around the face.
Details remain sketchy at this moment in time, but from the photos the un-sexily named G10 definitely looks the part with an 800 x 480 widescreen 260K display and slide out controls. The OS is Windows Mobile 5.0, two HDD capacities will be on offer (4GB and 8GB) and intriguingly a WiBro connection will be used not just for gaming but also wireless multimedia downloads provided by iRiver itself.
As the photo illustrates, 3D gaming is very much on the menu here but with no CPU and graphics details it’s hard to know just what level the G10 is going to strive for. Personally speaking, it makes little sense to make a machine like this more than one year after the PSP and not try to at least match it for horsepower…
If I do have one concern about the G10, it’s the controls. The dodgy looking Direction Pad has dropped the accepted tilt design for four independent buttons. I don’t know about you, but having to hold down two buttons every time you want to move at 45 degrees could get fiddly, while an analogue stick would’ve been welcome too.
With specs and release dates illusive cost is obviously not forthcoming, but it will be interesting to see whether iRiver positions the G10 against the Nintendo DS or the PSP. I’m hoping it has the guts to try and be top dog, if only to remind the King of Proprietary that it can’t have everything its own way.