Sony's PSP (PlayStation Portable) will benefit from the addition of wireless broadband functions, following a deal Sony has signed with BT.
Over the course of the four-year contract, the companies have said they will develop features to enable high-quality handheld video calls, voice calls and messaging to be carried out on the device.
BT will deliver the service initially in the UK. The company will be the lead wireless communications partner for SCEE (Sony Computer Entertainment Europe) in 102 territories across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Oceania. The partnership will integrate PSP with the BT Broadband video and voice 'softphone' products that are already available. Additional features will be added later to allow calls to be made and messages sent to PCs, landlines and mobiles.
Steve Andrews, chief of mobility and convergence at BT, said: "We are excited by the opportunity to give customers a whole new communications experience, connecting and seeing friends across the world through BT’s technology."
The launch date for the new PSP communications functionality will be announced at the Leipzig Games Convention in August. Wi-Fi is expected to be available for PSP later this year.