Sony announced on the official US PlayStation blog this morning that its Vue live TV and video streaming service will launch on Android next week (the week of June 26th). The Vue app will work with Android smartphones and tablets with Android 4.4 or higher, and the app will support Casting - hallelujah.
PlayStation Vue essentially aims to be a "cable replacement" service of sorts, offering cable, premium, and specialty channels at a variety of pricing packages ranging from $29.99 up to $54.99 per month. PlayStation Vue also offers a number of a la carte channels. And now, with an incoming Android app, you'll be able to Vue anywhere - including on TVs without PlayStations (and with Cast).
Sony makes PlayStations. It's also a huge movie and music production company. In 2012 the company offered the Sony Entertainment Network as a means of giving PlayStation owners something to watch and listen to that didn't involve a third-party like Netflix. It was also available in countries that competitors like Hulu didn't support.
That platform eventually turned into the PlayStation Network, with the video portion becoming PlayStation Video. Now an Android app has made its way into the Play Store that provides access to the same content.
Sometimes things don't go as planned. Sony released Driveclub for the PlayStation 4 in October of 2014. At the time, a companion came out for Android, but Sony quickly pulled the app after less than a day on the site. The servers struggled to handle the load of everyone trying to play, so Sony delayed the PlayStation Plus Edition and mobile companion app in order to reduce the strain.
Now it's March 2016, and version 1.0 of the Driveclub companion app has returned to Google Play.
The classic Final Fantasy RPG you've been waiting for is finally available on Android! No, not that one. Or that one, or that one either - it's number nine. This morning Square Enix published Final Fantasy IX, which was first released for the PlayStation way back in 2000, on the Play Store. If you have $16.99 to spare (and 4GB of free space on an Android 4.1+ phone or tablet), it can be yours. That's a 20% discount until February 21st, according to the app description.
PlayStation gamers have access to a complementary Android app that allows them to send new game downloads to their console remotely, use as a second-screen on some titles, and get social with other PlayStation members. The latter feature has now been cut from the main app and is getting released as a standalone PlayStation Messages client.
Messages is actually better designed than the full app, with a clean Material layout to view your current and favorite chats, check your friends list, see what they're playing, and interact with everyone. You can send texts and voice messages, attach photos and themed stickers, brag about your progress and scores, and more.
If you don't know what PlayStation Vue is, don't worry, you're not alone. It's not a gaming service of any kind, it's an IPTV subscription that delivers select shows and networks to the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. It's a sort of hardware-exclusive take on SlingTV. Or at least it was, until Sony announced that the service was expanding to other streaming devices. Amazon's Fire TV and Fire TV Stick will be the first non-Sony hardware compatible with PlayStation Vue, not counting iPhone and iPad.
Apparently there are still no plans for core Android app, but the service will expand to the Chromecast (and presumably Android TV by way of its built-in Cast support) at some point in the future.
Before we start, let's get one thing out of the way: there's no practical application for the apps demonstrated below, at least not in the way they're being used. You can't seriously play a game meant for a 20-button controller on a screen smaller than two inches across, even if your fingers are tiny enough to hit the virtual buttons. This is the work of an enthusiast gamer and Android fan. It doesn't have to make sense.
Alright, now that that's out of the way: YouTube user Hacking Jules would like you to see his collection of game emulators running on Android Wear.
Today's Android devices are powerful enough to run circles around most game consoles of yesteryear, but that doesn't mean emulating old hardware is easy. 2D games, sure, walk in the park—but replicating the original PlayStation is a different thing entirely. Nevertheless, that hasn't stopped an Android developer from trying to tackle the even more powerful PlayStation 2.
Play!, as the emulator is called, also supports Windows, Mac OS X, and iOS. Here's a video of an Android tablet running Final Fantasy X. Though they aren't demonstrated, we can see that the tester also has Capcom Vs SNK 2, Dragon Quest VIII, Dynasty Warriors 2, Gradius V, Kingdom Hearts, and Space Harrier saved to the device.
There's a huge emulator community on Android, helped in no small part by the fact that modern smartphones can handle older game console software without breaking a sweat. But 3D consoles and newer portable machines are harder to emulate - they require more power and more complex software to get bigger, more demanding games to run well. The PPSSPP emulator (for PlayStation Portable games) has been in development for a variety of platforms for several years, but now the 1.0 release is available for Android via an easy Play Store download.
PPSSPP has just about all of the standard emulator bases covered.
Dedicated PlayStation 4 gamers have had Sony's official Android app to play around with for a while now, but apparently it hasn't been optimized for use on tablets before today. You might think that's strange, seeing as Sony, well, makes tablets, but the various hardware, software, and digital content arms of Sony are somewhat disjointed. That tends to happen in gigantic international corporations. In any case, the 2.0 update to Sony's PlayStation is now available in the Play Store.
In addition to formal support for tablets, the homescreen has been redesigned, though you might have to look twice to notice.