One of Sony’s senior PR flacks is adamant that the PSP, like the PS3, has a 10-year life-cycle and so is good until 2014, seemingly ruling out any prospect of a quick release for a putative PSP2.
SCEA director of hardware and marketing John Koller is defiant in the face of probable annihilation by the 3DS:
There is absolutely a 10-year life cycle for PSP, and probably more.
We’ve talked about ‘We’ll be in the PSP business as long as we’re in the PlayStation business’, because we absolutely believe in handheld.
Unequivocally we think it’s a fantastic place to be, and I can tell you that I think my group particularly – the hardware group – fully believes in handheld because there’s different demographics that you can touch and bring in to the PlayStation world through handheld that you may not always be able to do through other avenues.
After only 6 years of life Koller seems to think the platform is only just getting started:
I think it’s a long term opportunity and we will stay in it. Now in terms of where we are in the current life cycle, I think we’re just kind of hitting our stride. We just announced that we hit 60 million units worldwide, which is a very good number for PSP, we’ve got a lot of good development support.
We always say a platform will turn off when the development spigot turns off. We’ve got 70 games coming this year, we’ve got 70-80 coming next year – it’s just a very healthy platform.
I don’t think we’d be spending investment to the tune that we are without full belief that this is a go-forward platform.
Speaking of “go-forward” platforms, one of his Japanese counterparts was recently quizzed about the dismal failure of the PSP Go – he evasively replied that Sony had “learnt a lot” through the process of releasing the console, refusing to even put a brave face on the disaster.
If Sony seriously believes it will have any portable market share left in 4 years without releasing the PSP2, it may be in for a rude awakening, although it may well not have the financial resources to risk any further failed releases.