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Expensive device leaves UMD owners in the dust

Yesterday was the first day that the PSP Go was available for sale at retail. Reaction was mixed, as many potential customers were displeased with the high price.

The new model (PSP-N1000) will sell for a MSRP of $249.99 compared to the $169.99 of the older PSP-3000 model that will continue to be sold indefinitely. It has a smaller 3.8 inch screen, versus the 4.3 inches of the PSP-3000 which uses Sony's proprietary Universal Media Disc (UMD) format. The PSP Go also features built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.

The latest generation of the PlayStation Portable lineup is the first to use digital downloads from the PlayStation Store as the exclusive means to buy a game. Games and demos are downloaded to the console's 16GB internal flash memory either directly, through Sony's software on a PC, or through a PlayStation 3. Additional storage of up to 32GB is available by purchasing a Memory Stick Micro device.

Sony had announced plans for a UMD trade-in program so that PSP owners would be able to use their old games, but nixed that due to "legal and technical issues". Many gamers are thus sticking with their older PSP models instead of upgrading to the PSP Go.

The firm hopes to make the entire PSP software library available at the PSP Store, but so far there are already 225 games available for download. Some retailers are upset that they will not see any revenue from software for the PSP Go, and have decided to boycott it.
 
The whole point of the PSP Go is to deliver games that are more affordable in a smaller, lighter package that has greater battery life. Sony is targeting gamers who don't yet have a portable console and Nintendo DS Lite owners who are looking for better graphics. Time will tell whether Sony will be successful or not.



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By vandalizer on 10/2/2009 9:18:47 AM , Rating: -1
For more than the price of an iPod Touch, people can buy access to a smaller library of more expensive games than the Apple alternative.

Even worse: Sony's new customers are going to be split between those who buy the PSP Go and find that they can't borrow and play any of their friend's/cousin's/classmate's UMB-format games and those who buy the PSP 3000 and find that they HAVE to buy a memory stick duo in addition to the retail cost of the actual games. In all likelihood, even though the digital distribution saves Sony huge amount of money, the games are going to stay the same price.

Apple's and Nintendo's installed base and lower prices on consoles and games leave Sony a small market.




By nosfed360 on 10/2/2009 9:29:50 AM , Rating: 5
I agree with almost everything you said, but...

Please do not even begin to compare the ipod vs the psp for games, that is a joke. The ipod works as a gaming device for people who play minesweeper, or other stupid flash games all day at work. The games for psp are a quantum leap ahead of of those for the ipod, in graphics..gameplay..and most importantly the controls of the psp vs the ipod.

2 different segments...2 different markets.


By Hyperion1400 on 10/2/2009 9:34:58 AM , Rating: 2
AW! You SoB you beat me to it ;)

Oh well, I got the pun and that's what's important!


By nosfed360 on 10/2/2009 9:42:47 AM , Rating: 2
I have been reading dailytech for a very long time...but I finally created an account just to post that. It needed to done... :)


By Hiawa23 on 10/2/2009 10:16:48 AM , Rating: 2
I really can't compare the Flashgames of IPOD to the PSP's games which are amazing for a handheld.

I have had my PSP1001 since day 1, & I am still blown away by the amount of power Sony squeezed into it.

I owned a DS Lite but dumped it as I just did not like the graphics, or touchscreen, plus I have alot of my DVDs now on PSP, & music, so I totally love it & it's many uses, but noway in H--- could I see buying a 2000 3000 model & noway in h---- would I buy the GO given I have over 30 UMD games, & non transferable, & my original PSP is like new.

I don't know what Sony was thinking with this price or the fact that they would not allow you to transfer your games from disc to digital, although I understand there are licensing issues.

I logged onto the PSN store & why would I upgrade to the Go when my PSP can download the same games, plus I have 40Gbs worth of mem sticks, & since I only carry the games I want play at any time it's no hassle carrying them. I like how they have the PSN store setup so I will probably get some games, but no interest in a PSP with a smaller screen for $249. The PS3 is $299, you can even get an Xbox 360 & Wii for less than what Sony is asking. Had they added more to the graphics chip or added some Fullscene AA I might have been more receptive to the GO, but this is a cash grab for Sony & I am not hatin on em. Hope it does well, but I am fine with PSP1001.


By afkrotch on 10/3/2009 5:42:05 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
but noway in H--- could I see buying a 2000 3000 model


You do know that the 2000 and 3000 are slimmer models of the 1000 and have added features, better screen, battery life, etc. They also support larger sized memory sticks, not being limited to the like 8 GB of the 1000. Was it 8 gig or 4 gig limitation? Well, whatever it was.

Also flaws of the systems were fixed. They moved the speaker locations, so your hand isn't muffling them up anymore. They put in a better D pad. The 1000's D pad is horrid. You couldn't go diagonal with the stupid thing. It annoyed the crap out of me, when playing my 2D fighter games.

My only complaint, is the removal of the power docking connections on the 3000. I can't use my old USB docking station to recharge it. I have to get a new one.


By Hiawa23 on 10/5/2009 2:58:35 PM , Rating: 2
You do know that the 2000 and 3000 are slimmer models of the 1000 and have added features, better screen, battery life, etc. They also support larger sized memory sticks, not being limited to the like 8 GB of the 1000. Was it 8 gig or 4 gig limitation? Well, whatever it was.

come on, I am a gamer, I am aware of the differences & none of them was worth me upgrading my 1000 model to the 2000 or 3000 & certainly not the GO. You made a mistake the 2000 3000 donot support larger mem sticks as I have a 32GB mem stick working fine in my PSP. There is no limitation as my 4 & 8 16 32 GBs sticks work fine.


By nafhan on 10/2/2009 9:39:07 AM , Rating: 1
The games on iPhone are getting better with major releases from both indies and traditional publishers, and the 3GS hardware is at least in the same ball park as the PSP. The PSP Go has the advantage with control scheme and game library, right now. Sony needs to run with their advantages while they still can, or else I think they're going to find themselves in third place for mobile gaming.


By nosfed360 on 10/2/2009 9:46:58 AM , Rating: 3
no...just no. The fact that the iphone has basically 1 hardware button will keep it from ever being more than a "ifart machine" player.

Watching virtual water move around as you rotate the device is something patients in a mental hospital do to pass the time, not gamers.
Until you can run Gran Turismo on it, and have it actually playable and fun, take that apple "gaming device" crap out of here.....actually, is there an app to add hardware buttons?


By nafhan on 10/2/2009 10:08:26 AM , Rating: 2
I agree that physical controls are needed for situations that require high precision such as racing sims or fighting games. I also think that if Sony isn't careful they're going to find themselves in a niche. There's a lot of "hardcore gamers" out there who play strategy and RPG games, both of which lend themselves well to a touch screen. In the end, it all comes down to the games and whether or not people are buying them. We'll see how it goes.


By B on 10/2/2009 1:44:49 PM , Rating: 2
I think this is beginning to change. For example, Civilization Revolution is now available on the iPod Touch. I understand that the game has the same depth and feel of its counterpart sold for the Nintendo DS.


By Ananke on 10/2/2009 1:47:49 PM , Rating: 2
No, it is the same market - personal mobile entertainment, and SONY just made a huge mistake not defining the market segment properly. This device is doomed, it will not sale. And YES, comparing to Ipod or other smartphones is very very proper marketing here.

For this thing to be successful: 1. it has to be smartphone 2. it has to have the huge application base like Apple
Sony is probably teh only company that has the resources to build a real competitor to Apple, but instead they try to segment the personal mobile entertainment market. HUGE mistake here....

Sony are already behind in many other sale segments because of the proprietory Memory Stick too. They have great technologies, but they tend to screw their markets recently...and things will only get worse with the financial crisis and falling disposable incomes. Even the BluRay will inevitably become obsolete, given the multimedia players like WD TV and alikes, and the falling cost of storage. Gee, I can put at least 20 high definition movies with true dolby sound on a $70 hard drive and watch them anywhere - why will I use a BR media with $25 price tag per one blank disk?


By BansheeX on 10/2/2009 4:28:29 PM , Rating: 2
Saying that the PSP targeting the same demographic as the iPhone is moronic. You may as well be saying that Megadeth targets the same audience as the Jonas Brothers. Just because they're both music doesn't mean they're vying for the same piece of the pie. It also doesn't mean that either one is stupid for not simultaneously going for the biggest slice. If no one is going for the smallest slice, you may acquire MORE of the pie than by trying to wrest a giant one from two other people.


By afkrotch on 10/3/2009 5:48:40 AM , Rating: 1
So does this mean that every single PMP on the market should be added to the smartphone market?

Here's the market for smartphones.

1. Be a phone
2. Be a PDA
3. nothing else

Let's see what the PSP does.

1. Not a phone
2. Not a PDA
3. Plays games, music, and vids, displays pictures

ZOMG! They are exactly in the same market as a smartphone. Why the fuck didn't I see that!?!


By Ananke on 10/3/2009 2:49:55 PM , Rating: 2
Hmm, you are confusing the phones 5 years ago with the modern mobile devices. Smartphones just recently became mass market because of their multimedia capability. Why 90% of the young adults would spend $250 for PSP Go on the top of their Iphone or Ipod or HD Zune? And we shall consider the inconviniently expensive MemStick, games costing 20-40 bucks, ets.

So, seems like SONY aims at a small niche market like teenagers and below, who usually don't have own income. Why I as a parent shall give my child $250 on the top of his/her Ipod /a must have for a teenager/? Apple store games are available for as little as $1. Who gives a s**** that SONY $40 games are more hard-core games, when they cost so much more then any other entertainment alternative?

That's my point - the device may have a niche market, but then it is priced totally inappropriately for that. So either they have to reduce the price significantly, or to sell very low volume at this price. Both ways their total PSP Go revenue will collapse.


By Alexstarfire on 10/3/2009 7:57:20 PM , Rating: 2
I'm gonna go with people that actually want to play them for more than 30 minutes total. I'm not saying all games on the iPhone/iTouch are bad and/or get boring quickly, but I've seen my far share of games on my dad's iPhone and many of them just look stupid.

Though if you're just looking at prices then you might as well just look at only homebrew games for the PSP. I mean, you can get most of them for free after all. I'd personally take quality over price any day. It's why I've loved all of Blizzard's products, although WoW simply doesn't appeal to me you can't say it's not well made, and own all of them. I've paid for Diablo 2 and Starcraft multiple times, sadly because I've lost the discs or more accurately because my friends have lost the discs. It's been worth it every time since the games don't lose there replay value even after this long. I really don't see how something on the Iphone could be equal or better than something like Need for Speed on the PSP. Sure, not all games are going to be great on the PSP just like not all games are going to be garbage on the iPhone. But you have a dedicated gaming device compared to a phone that has the ability to play games. There is never a comparison in terms of quality.

Though your argument seems kind of hypocritical at best. If you are saying that you don't need overlapping devices then that's fine, but I'm sure you probably have a digital camera to take pictures even though your phone has been capable of taking pictures for years. And perhaps not now, but at some point I'm sure you had an MP3 player as well as a phone. Of course you'd be right in that you really don't need 2 multimedia players for one person. The fact that the iPhone/iTouch and PSP overlap in so many areas does make it a dilemma. And considering the price for the Go I certainly understand why you wouldn't get it if your kid has an iPhone/iTouch, but the old PSP is a lot cheaper, and can be found used for even less. No reason you couldn't get one of those if they wanted the games on it.


By Hyperion1400 on 10/2/2009 9:33:21 AM , Rating: 2
Did you just compare Apple's applet library to the fully blown games available on the PSP(pun completely intended)? You cannot compare Defend Your Castle: Iphone Edition to something like Killzone or Motorstorm.

Don't get me wrong I totally agree with you on everything else; whether or not Sony sees it they are totally giving the shaft to their customers and history does tend to repeat itself(do I really have to post a wiki link to the Sega page?)


By mmntech on 10/2/2009 10:04:05 AM , Rating: 2
I never thought I'd see Apple and better value in the same thought on this site. lol

The PSP will stick around for some time I think. The iPod Touch may be cheaper but the games and controls are inferior to a stand alone portable. I personally hate playing anything more than simple titles on my iPhone. I'd say it's a bigger threat to the DS than it is the PSP.

Still, the GO is a disappointment because it hasn't really brought anything new to the table. The PSP should have had built in memory since day one. Bluetooth is a little superfluous and downloadable titles work with any PSP. Lack of a UMD drive is a really killer, something game shops strongly dislike. Rather than producing stop-gap solutions, Sony should be focusing it's resources on the PSP2. There was nothing wrong with the PSP-2000. The Go really didn't need to be made.


By Hiawa23 on 10/2/2009 10:27:27 AM , Rating: 2
The Go really didn't need to be made.

Like I said this was a cash grab. It can't possibly cost Sony that much more to make the GO than the 3000. Not as much as they are asking but this is capitalism, so either buy it & love it or do like most of us & just enjoy the one you already have.

These hardware manufacturers are hilarious as they expect gamers to keep rebuying the same hardware over & over when make a revision or two.... not in this economy, 10% umemployment or worse.

I have loved all the Playstations including the PS3, but, no thanks Sony, NOGO on the GO for me. If my 1001 model fails I will just buy the 3000 or 2000 on Ebay or something.


By hduser on 10/2/2009 1:55:44 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I have loved all the Playstations including the PS3, but, no thanks Sony, NOGO on the GO for me. If my 1001 model fails I will just buy the 3000 or 2000 on Ebay or something.


The 3000 is still being sold with the Go. But the Go is a big dud for me. Where do I start?

1. It's more expensive then the 3000.
2. No way to transfer my UMD library?
3. Gone from proprietary Memory Stick Duo to even more proprietary MS duo micro? Way to shaft people who bought into the MS Duo already.
4. Smaller screen.

Obviously, Sony didn't have you or me in mind in creating the Go. It's not even worth considering. No thanks Sony, I just hope the Go doesn't kill the entire PSP market.


By Hiawa23 on 10/2/2009 2:22:18 PM , Rating: 2
Obviously, Sony didn't have you or me in mind in creating the Go. It's not even worth considering. No thanks Sony, I just hope the Go doesn't kill the entire PSP market.

Amen, I hope they don't kill off the entire PSP market also, which is what to me seems like a huge gamble, but like they say, in order to have big gains you have to take risks..


By The0ne on 10/2/2009 2:38:21 PM , Rating: 2
They're trying to do a "Nintendo" but lol it's removal of features and at a much higher price O.o Seriously, someone at Sony had to see this isn't going to work out. No one is going to dump their UMD games and pay again for the same games. That's would be dumb...oh wait, Sony's betting on that :D


By BansheeX on 10/2/2009 4:16:49 PM , Rating: 2
The way Sony sees it, the PSP is due for 50million more sales to people who don't own a PSP. They're not just targeting "upgraders". That's why the want to get momentum started on a media-less model. It only just now became economical to do 16gb of flash memory on top of everything else in the PSP.

It WILL eventually surpass monthly sales of the old model, because UMD sucks up that much more battery life.


By brandonicus on 10/2/2009 9:31:37 PM , Rating: 2
Also, I can see Sony selling a lot of popular titles through their online store only. Thus, making the greater memory capacity of the Go seem like a better deal.


By The0ne on 10/3/2009 3:30:15 PM , Rating: 2
I don't disagree with you but don't think there's 50mil consumers willing to jump on this bandwagon. And while I do like the digital downloads I'm also worry that you really don't own it.

Yes you can argue that you do, but as other have pointed out you can copy it, you can't back it up, you can't do anything but leave it there and play it. And Sony will pull a "Amazon" if they choose to. They are not a company that will shy away from doing such things, base on their history of business of course.

There's very little incentive to want to purchase the PSP Go. But then consumers will be consumers :)


By BansheeX on 10/4/2009 1:14:50 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I don't disagree with you but don't think there's 50mil consumers willing to jump on this bandwagon. And while I do like the digital downloads I'm also worry that you really don't own it.


That's what they said when the UMD model was first introduced, but it sold 50mil didn't it? UMD was reviled and criticized, yet flash was simply too expensive then for PSP-size games. This is a new chapter that had to happen. UMD is NOT the future and you are not going to be able to carry UMD games over to the PSP2 any more than the PSPGo, so whether you complain now or later is immaterial to Sony. They want to get the ball rolling.

If you were looking to buy your first PSP today, you would be a complete moron not to get this model. It's more portable and UMD, being a mechanical form of storage, eats battery like a mofo. A media-less PSP had to be released as soon as it was economical.

If you OWN a UMD model already, you have no reason to buy the Go. We get it. Sony gets it, too. You are not the market right now. You can still play your UMD games and buy a stick to play download-only games. You have access to all games that Go buyers have access to. Sony doesn't expect you to rebuy the system and all your games, they expect you to keep using the UMD model and get a flash stick.


By daveloft on 10/4/2009 2:53:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
That's what they said when the UMD model was first introduced, but it sold 50mil didn't it? UMD was reviled and criticized, yet flash was simply too expensive then for PSP-size games. This is a new chapter that had to happen. UMD is NOT the future and you are not going to be able to carry UMD games over to the PSP2 any more than the PSPGo, so whether you complain now or later is immaterial to Sony. They want to get the ball rolling.

If you were looking to buy your first PSP today, you would be a complete moron not to get this model. It's more portable and UMD, being a mechanical form of storage, eats battery like a mofo. A media-less PSP had to be released as soon as it was economical.

If you OWN a UMD model already, you have no reason to buy the Go. We get it. Sony gets it, too. You are not the market right now. You can still play your UMD games and buy a stick to play download-only games. You have access to all games that Go buyers have access to. Sony doesn't expect you to rebuy the system and all your games, they expect you to keep using the UMD model and get a flash stick.4


This is one of the few intelligent posts I've read on this entire blog, I totally agree with you.

I think Sony is positioning this to compete with the iPod Touch which sells for $199.99 w\ 8GB and $299 w\ 32GB. $249.99 for a 16GB PSP seems about right with that frame of reference.

I'm all for digital downloads and I believe it to be the future of gaming. I commend Sony for making the leap and bringing the first digital download only console to the market. I think this shows how worried they are of the iPod Touch media player from taking a big chunk of the portable gaming market.


By mitchger on 10/7/2009 9:07:02 AM , Rating: 2
FINALLY.

I have never read such bulls**t comments in my life. What a bunch of complete and utter morons.

Keep your PSP 1000-3000 - couldn't be happier for you and the fact that you enjoy them. Nobody is suggesting you may be forced to buy this [GO] product. It IS however the way of the future, well done to Sony, and YES I would most definitely choose the GO over the 3000 as the most convenient and practical solution/option of the two.

iPhone obsessed people also amuse me.


"So, I think the same thing of the music industry. They can't say that they're losing money, you know what I'm saying. They just probably don't have the same surplus that they had." -- Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA














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