Sony Corp. remained tight-lipped over reports that it may combine its PlayStation Portable game console with a mobile telephone into a new gadget to challenge rival Apple's iPhone.
Sony is considering developing a new portable game console with the added functions of a Sony Ericsson cellphone, the Nikkei business daily reported on Saturday without revealing its sources.
The high-tech giant, which has faced tough competition in recent years from rival products such as Apple's iPod and Nintendo's Wii, will set up a team in July to look into the development of the new product, the Nikkei said.
Sony, which will mark the 30th anniversary on Wednesday of the launch of its first Walkman portable music player, declined to confirm or deny the report.
"We don't comment on plans for next-generation consoles. The report is mere speculation," a spokeswoman for the group's game unit told AFP.
Sony chief executive Howard Stringer is under pressure to turn around the high-tech giant, which in May announced its first annual loss in 14 years and warned it would stay in the red this year.
Sony Ericsson is a joint venture between Sony and Sweden's Ericsson.
(c) 2009 AFP