Hirai: PSP go had a market – it was just smaller than PSP-3000’s

By Stephany Nunneley, Wednesday, 8 September 2010 16:56 GMT


PlayStation head Kaz Hirai has said PSP go had a market, but it just wasn’t as large as that enjoyed by PSP-3000.

“Pricing is perhaps an issue”

When Sony released PSP go last fall, there was a bit of a backlash at retail due to it being a download-only device lacking a UMD drive and having a much higher price point than PSP-3000.

However, even with this lack of retail support, Hirai is pleased with how things are going for the handheld.

“I think we did cater for a market, albeit not as big as the traditional PSP-3000 market,” he told MCV. “It is the first time we have done that with any of our devices, and we did get a lot of feedback, both good and bad.

“I think we need to make sure we have as many titles available to download as possible, to make the experience as easy as possible. But also pricing is perhaps an issue. Because of the cost reductions we’ve been able to do over the years, the traditional PSP has benefited. But the PSP go is a completely different design, so the cost trend is different.

“Those are some factors. But I’m happy with the results that we’ve seen on PSP go, including the invaluable feedback that we’ve been getting from our consumers. I think it has done well for us.”

A step towards a digital future? Not yet

Despite releasing a digital-only handheld device, Sony doesn’t plan on releasing a handheld or home console lacking physical media capabilities any time soon.

In fact, as Hirai has stated before,  Sony does “business in parts of the world where network infrastructure isn’t as robust as one would hope,” and to think everything will be download only in “two years, three years or even ten years from now” is taking things a bit to “the extreme”.

However, Hirai believes Sony is offering the consumer the best of both worlds by catering to both the physical media and digital services devout, and cited new additions to PSN as an example.

“We just started the Qriocity video delivery service in the US for Sony Bravia TV sets, and we’ll obviously expand that to other territories,” he said.

“That is one way for us to leverage the infrastructure we have on PlayStation Network. We will be expanding it to a lot of Sony devices that we have within the group. So more to come from that.

“This industry brings so many different experiences to the consumer that it changes literally every year. It is very exciting for me to be part of and drive that change.”

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Kaz Hirai