Sony Computer Entertainment Europe’s CEO has admitted that the PSPgo wasn’t exactly what consumers were looking for, and implied that it was a grand experiment aimed at determining what, in fact, they are looking for. Analysts in the industry predict that digital content would eventually replace physical media (like Blu-ray discs), and this was an attempt by Sony to see if it would work.
The world of content distribution is changing, of course, and disc-based platforms are, in the words of EA’s Peter Moore, a “burning platform.” It’s clear that Sony’s attempt to test this wasn’t the best way of going about it – the PSPgo cost significantly more than the older UMD-based models and wasn’t backwards compatible with your existing games library. These are just two of the reasons why the console didn’t sell well.
The PSPgo sold around 18,000 units in Japan during 2009. By comparison, the DS sold over 10,000 units per day in Japan. That’s pretty much a total failure. Sony’s is likely to go back on the digital-only strategy and reintroduce the UMD drive in the next iteration of the PSP, rumored to be unveiled at E3.