PSP North American launch date unveiled
The PlayStation Portable set to release next month across North America.
Friday, February 4, 2005 - Sony Computer Entertainment America announced today that the PSP (PlayStation Portable) handheld entertainment system will be available across North America on March 24th, with the release of the PSP Value Pack for a suggested retail price of $249.99 U.S. ($299.99 CND).
(Posted: Friday, February 4, 2005, 7:05PM GMT)
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The Value Pack, in addition to the console (for full specs, look here), will contain a 32 MB Memory Stick Duo, headphones with remote control, battery pack, AC adaptor, soft case, cleaning cloth, movie/music/game video sampler UMD disc including multiple non-interactive game demos, and for the first one million PSP Value Packs shipped, a special UMD video release of Spider-Man 2.
Sony Computer Entertainment will manufacture one million units for sale in North America before the end of the fiscal year ending March 31st. This figure is part of SCEA's plan to ship a total of three million units worldwide within the same time period. The PSP was released in Japan on December 12nd, 2004, with 800,000 units shipped to date.
Needless to say, the PSP will not have a easy life with Nintendo monopolizing the handheld gaming market with its old GameBoy and the new DS consoles. Anyhow, like it happened 10 years ago with the PlayStation, SCEI seems focused in making potential buyers perceive the PSP as something more than a gaming machine - hence the decision to include Spider-Man 2 in the first one million PSP Value Packs. In fact, the PSP is able to play movies, music (MP3 and ATRAC formats are supported), and it allows for digital photo display. The true question is - are players really interested in having a "portable entertainment center", while other devices, like cell phones, are already doing the same? The PSP is doing well in Japan, where it is outselling Nintendo DS in the weekly sales charts, with a lead of over 10,000 units a week. Anyhow, with the excellent sales of the DS in December, beating the DS' overall sales will be a tougher challenge.
It will be an interesting fight, and the staff at Ps2Fantasy.com will be there to bring you news, reviews, previews, and everything else about the PSP, just like we have done with the PlayStation 2. A new website dedicated to the PSP will be launched soon; together with Ps2Fantasy.com, this new website will be the starting point of our project to create a "Fantasy" network of websites - PsFantasy.com. In this always free, always independent network, interaction with our readers and members will be more important than ever.
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