One of the most exciting features found in the latest crop of high-end Sony smartphones and tablets is their game streaming capabilities. Of course, you’ll need to have a PlayStation 4 console and the accompanying DualShock 4 controller, but if you do have these, this new feature opens up a world of possibilities as far as gaming on your mobile device goes.
As you may have seen during the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact review, you can keep your device on any surface while using it with the controller, but for an even better experience, Sony does have a DS4-compatible game control mount. This mount can be used with every device that offers Remote Play capabilities, including the Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact, the Verizon-exclusive Xperia Z3v, the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact, as well as the Xperia Z2, following a recent software update to Android 4.4.4 Kitkat. The game control mount will be more easily available later this month, but I was able to pick one up directly from Verizon.
In the box was just the mount itself and a small booklet with basic instructions on how to set it up. The mount is essentially a clasp that goes around the DS4 controller and snaps into place, with a suction cup to hold the smartphone or tablet in place. The angle of the suction cup can be adjusted to best suit your needs.
As far as playing actual PS4 games go, you will not be using the pre-installed PlayStation app, but instead, the new Remote Play app from Sony, that can be downloaded from the Google Play Store. The PS4 and the phone or tablet should be connected to the same Wi-Fi network, but I do recommend connecting the PS4 to your router using an ethernet cable, for a smoother experience. The controller itself will be paired to the phone via Bluetooth, and once the initial setup is done, the whole process is a lot faster the next time around.
Once everything is done, you basically access the PS4 on the mobile display the same way you would on the TV. A certain amount of latency does creep up, so games like first person shooters might be a little difficult to play using Remote Play. I have been playing a lot of WWE 2K15, and it is a very enjoyable experience, even with the slight latency.
So there you have it – a quick look at the Sony Game Control Mount and Remote Play! The Game Control Mount is currently available from Verizon Wireless for $39.99, but should make its way to other stores and online retailers later this month.
While this a great way to enjoy your console games on your mobile device, you do have to contend with battery life issues, so you won’t be able to enjoy gaming for more than a few hours. Latency does result in a few issues, particularly in games where timing is key, but for the most part, it is really fun to use. This is definitely one of the best features of an already great line of smartphones and tablets, and the only gripe you may have is the fact that the display of the Xperia Z3 is too small to enjoy a PS4 game to its fullest, and would be much better on the larger screen of the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact.