Sony PSP: Frustratingly Beautiful

A Non-Sony USB

Fortunately, close inspection of the upper edge of the PSP reveals a standard USB Mini Port. You read right - it's actually standard USB. But Sony doesn't provide a cable; sorry, were you expecting one? Still, if you do procure a cable, it's possible to connect the console to a PC, which then recognizes it without a driver, provided you set it up in the PSP's menus. Incredible, eh? This PSP port also lets you access the Memory Stick to transfer files.

Proprietary WiFi

Connectivity doesn't stop there, because the PSP also includes a WiFi module. You're overjoyed because you'll be able to do wireless transfers to and from PC, surf the Web, and send e-mail? Sorry. None of those are possible, at least not officially - the WiFi is only for multiplayer gaming.

The PSP offers both ad hoc and infrastructure modes. In ad hoc, you can connect several consoles for gaming, while infrastructure mode lets you connect via a router and play online. Configuring the network infrastructure is very simple. After a quick scan, the console displays all the networks available, their reception quality, and the type of security they are using. For networks encrypted using a WEP key, the PSP prompts you to enter it. Entry is telephone-keypad style (in groups of 3 or 4 letters) and not very easy. Once configuration is complete, a final screen recaps the information and launches a test. If your WiFi network is connected to the Net, you'll even be able to update your console, very simply, via the "Update" menu.

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