PSP Turns 5 Years Old

Not to be outdone by Nintendo, Sony just sent over the following press release.  My comments follow…

March 24, 2010 – Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) today celebrates the five-year anniversary of the PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system, the first integrated handheld entertainment system to introduce console-quality gaming and comprehensive entertainment capabilities to the portable market. Five years after its North American debut on March 24, 2005, the PSP platform continues to provide an unmatched portable entertainment experience, offer incredible value and is still going strong with more than 17 million units of the PSP system sold in the U.S. to-date.

“Five years ago, PlayStation had yet to break into the portable market,” said Peter Dille, Senior Vice President, Marketing and PlayStation Network, at Sony Computer Entertainment America. “Today, the PSP system is a well-established handheld platform that continuously redefines portable entertainment with quality that’s unparalleled. As PSP celebrates its fifth anniversary, the best is yet to come. We’re very excited about the vibrant 2010 lineup and are committed to continuing to offer entertainment experiences and immersive gameplay only possible on the PlayStation platform.”

“PlayStation has repeatedly made bold decisions through the introduction of technology that continues to redefine the entertainment landscape, whether it be in the living room or on-the-go,” said Jesse Divnich, Vice President, Analyst Services at EEDAR. “Over the last five years, the PSP system has always reflected Sony’s ability to understand and meet the needs of modern consumers by providing a convergent device that offers high-quality gaming, photo, movie, and audio support.”

Since 2005, more than 245 developers have created software titles for the platform since launch. To date, users can choose from more than 520 software titles available in the U.S. on UMD®(Universal Media Disc) and more than 300 titles on the PlayStation®Network. With award-winning first-party software titles including God of War: Chains of OlympusGran TurismoLittleBigPlanet, Resistance: Retribution, and SOCOM: Fireteam Bravo, and triple-A third-party franchises such as FINAL FANTASY (Square Enix, Inc.) and Grand Theft Auto (RockStar Games), the PSP software library features a variety of titles from every major publisher.

Access to PlayStation®Store was introduced to PSP owners in 2007 and has since helped to establish PlayStation Network as the premier destination for downloadable gaming and entertainment content. Today, PlayStation Network offers PSP owners tens of thousands of digital entertainment choices, including over 20,000 movies and TV episodes, “minis,” digital comics, original programming, as well as more than 300 games, many of which are exclusive.

PSP hardware has continued to evolve from the original PSP-1000® system, which boasted a best-in-class, 4.3 inch high-resolution LCD display, more than 125 games at launch, and built-in wireless communications.  In 2007, SCE released the PSP-2000 system, which was 33 percent lighter than the original model. In 2008, the PSP-3000 system debuted, which featured an enhanced LCD screen with five times the color contrast ratio of previous models. In fall 2009, the PSP®go system was made available in North America, becoming the first and only all-digital, full-game handheld entertainment system on the market.

With five years under its belt, the PSP platform continues to introduce industry trend-setting features and functionality and serves as a testament to the innovation and unmatched entertainment experience the PlayStation brand delivers to consumers across its portfolio of products.

So enough about that.  Where were you when the PSP launched?  I was right there on day 1 and was a little surprised by the lack of massive lines at my local game shop.  I figured this had to do with the high price point at which Sony launched the device, because the buzz was clearly loud.  In terms of pre-launch, I was at E3 the year Sony formally revealed the PSP.  It was the same year Nintendo showcased the original DS.  Yes, that was some time ago now.  I distinctly remember how excited everyone was about Sony entering the portable game market, and how just about everyone thought they would steal the crown from Nintendo.  It’s pretty stunning to see what actually happened.  Regardless of that, Sony can still claim they are the #1 competition Nintendo has ever had.  No one has ever sold anywhere near as many portables as Sony has, except for Nintendo.

The PSP shown to the press at E3, for the very first time.

Moving on to this year, all eyes are now on Sony to see exactly what they will reveal at this year’s E3.  Could we finally see the PSP2, or will Sony simply remodel the existing product.  Only time will tell, but right now, Sony has a lot of work to do in order to catch up to Nintendo, and new-comer Apple.

What’s that I hear, war drums?

4 thoughts on “PSP Turns 5 Years Old”

  1. Kudos to Sony for taking it to Nintendo in their own game. We all know of the rise and fall of all companies who entered the portable market and tried taking a piece off Nintendo’s pie. Sony should be proud of the PSP’s run even if they’re not number 1. Their biggest obstacle with the PSP is obviously the UMD which is a rather clunky format that made our lives and developer’s harder. Sony tried to completely eliminate it by going digital with the Go, but that made things even worse given gamers are already used to the crappy physical format. So my advice to Sony is: come up with something more functional for the PSP2.

    I’ve been with the PSP since launch as well. Great system with a huge technological advantage over the big N. I played my share of epic games on this handheld, most notably Crisis Core and Dissidia. Here’s to another year or so of great content.

  2. Yeah Ahmed, I’m glad someone was able to enter the market and prove sustainable. Where Sony heads now is anyone’s guess. Nintendo has sort of revealed their hand, but I’m fairly certain Sony will have something for us at E3. What that is, is anyone’s guess.

    What do you think Sony will do with a PSP2?

    1. One thing’s for sure, Jarrod…Sony can’t take the easy way out and just increase the power of the handheld. They need a catch. Maybe something similar to PlayStation Move but specifically for the PSP2?

      1. Yeah I say the same thing. I’m not entirely sure what they can do though. The touch screen, accelerometer, etc, has already been done. They can’t even make an “all-in-wonder” because Apple has that market dominated. So where does that leave Sony? A motion sensing portable? Honestly, I know they have smarter people working there, but I’m at a total loss.

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