The rumors surrounding a significantly redesigned PSP--one that would forgo a UMD drive in favor of internal flash storage--have been coming so hot and heavy in the lead up to E3, we were pretty sure that we'd learn all about it at Sony's press conference next week. Unfortunately for Sony's best-laid plans, a shaky-cam version of what appears to be an upcoming episode of Qore, Sony's own PSN-based promotional "video magazine," has hit YouTube, confirming the existence of the PSP Go and providing a slew of details.
In the video, Qore host Veronica Belmont speaks with what appears to be Sony marketing chief John Koller, who starts off talking about some of the games that will be available for the new PSP Go download service, name-checking franchises like Gran Turismo, Jak & Daxter, and Metal Gear Solid, as well as the already-announced LittleBigPlanet PSP game. He goes on to briefly talk about plans to roll out movie rental and purchase and TV show purchasing on the PSP Go, and it kind of sounds like there might be some portability between video purchases made on the PS3 and the PSP.
The hardware is shown briefly, and while it appears to retain the same number of buttons as its predecessor, it also looks to feature a screen that will slide down over the controls, something that was key to all the PSP Go rumors up to now, and will apparently make the PSP Go smaller than the current PSP 3000 hardware. Surprisingly, Koller says that the PSP Go will not be a replacement for the PSP 3000, which Sony will continue to sell.
Aside from the sliding screen and the smaller form-factor, the PSP Go will also feature 16GB of internal flash memory to support the whole download-only format, as well as Bluetooth for tethering to the PS3 as well as cell phones, though no specifics are given as to what kind of functionality this will provide.
Sony has still given no official confirmation about this, and I suspect we still won't hear a peep from them, despite how convincing this evidence is. Here's the YouTube video that started all this fun, though I suspect it won't take long for Sony to have this pulled.
UPDATE: Eurogamer has also unearthed a gallery of clean, high-res images of the hardware. As they say, "Somebody's PSP Go-ing to get fired."