The PlayStation Portable (PSP) was released March 24, 2005 and marked Sony's first entry into the handheld gaming market.
In late 2007, the PSP was upgraded with a new hardware variation known by the model number PSP-2000.
On August 20, 2008, at the Leipzig Games Convention, Sony announced a new revision of the PSP, the PSP-3000.
On June 2, 2009, at E3 in Los Angeles, Sony announced the PSPgo, which removed the UMD drive and instead was the first dedicated gaming handheld to be completely dependent on downloaded software.
In August, 2011, at Gamescom in Cologne, Sony announced the budget priced PSP-E1000 for PAL regions, which retained a UMD drive but removed network support. This would be the last revision of the PSP.
Following the release of the PSP-2000, Sony announced a limited edition Star Wars themed version of the PSP that would come with the game Battlefront Renegade Squadron. It was the first of several bundle packages, and Sony has since released a silver Daxter PSP bundled with the game of the same title and a memory stick, a God of War: Chains of Olympus red PSP, a blue Madden 09 PSP, and a Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters PSP bundle. After the release of the Ratchet & Clank bundle, Sony released the new PSP 3000 Core pack.
PSP-2000 (PSP Slim)
During the E3 conference of 2007, Sony released several details about their first PSP hardware revision. The model number is PSP-2000, then commonly referred to as the PSP Slim. The Slim replaced the original (or ''phat'') PSP on the market and had significant hardware changes. The amount of RAM in the PSP-2000 was doubled from 32 megabytes to 64 megabytes. (This added RAM was primarily used to decrease UMD load times, and to improve the memory limit when browsing web pages.) The Slim's battery was manufactured to supply the same amount of playtime as the Phat battery while attaining a smaller form factor. The WLAN switch was moved to the top of the device, and the UMD drive was replaced with a slimmer version that requires the user to open it manually, as opposed to the spring-loaded version in the PSP-1000 that was activated using a switch.
The PSP Slim was released in September of 2007.
PSP-3000 (PSP Brite)
Sony officially announced the PSP-3000 at the 2008 Leipzig Games Convention. Improvements over the PSP-2000 included a built in mic, a new PS button that replaces the Home button, and an improved LCD screen. The new screen features twice the color gamut, five times the contrast ratio, and a response time that is twice as fast as the PSP-2000's LCD screen. It also features a new anti-reflective technology for improved viewing of the LCD screen in outdoor areas.
The PSP-3000 was released in Japan, Europe and North America in October as part of the Rachet and Clank: Size Matters Entertainment Pack . Europe saw the PSP-3000 released for €199 on October 15. North America was able to get the PSP-3000 in one bundle on October 14 for $199.99. This pack contains a silver PSP, Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters, the movie National Treasure 2 on UMD, a PlayStation Network voucher for Echochrome and a 1GB ProDUO Memory Stick.
A second bundle, named the PSP-3000 Core Pack was originally announced to be available in early November 2008. This bundle was later delayed near the end of October. The Bundle was later released in mid December 2008. The bundle includes only a Piano Black PSP-3000.
During E3 2009, Sony revealed the PSPgo. (or PSP Go) Leaked before their actual press conference in a mistakenly released issue of Qore, the PSPgo was one of the ''worst kept secrets'' in the gaming industry. Rumours persist that Sony was the catalyst of this leak in order to gain media coverage before the deluge of games announced at E3. This iteration of the handheld features a reliance on a digital-only software catalogue, and is incompatible with the previously released UMD games, as it lacks a UMD drive. Other than the lack of a UMD drive, it is technically the same system but with a different size and form factor.
PSPgo features a slide-out game pad, a 3.8 inch screen, and is 23 percent lighter than the PSP-3000. The device also has supports Bluetooth connection to a PS3 Dualshock controller, and has 16GB of internal flash memory to store games downloaded from the PSN store. The storage space is expandable by the use of Sony's proprietary M2 Memory Stick, unlike the other models of PSP, which use the Memory Stick ProDUO. The PSPgo existed alongside the PSP-3000 when it launched on October 1st, 2009, and unlike other PSP revisions was not intended by Sony to be a replacement for existing models.
The device proved unpopular with many gamers for various reasons, most notably the fact that many PSP titles released on UMD were not available to be purchased from the PSN store. Other issues included high prices of games (at least typically), slow download speeds, games being listed incorrectly in PSN store, and lack of quality control of PSN versions of previously UMD-only games, which may includes glitches not found in their UMD counterparts.
Announced at Gamescom 2011, the PSP-E1000 is a budget-priced PSP available only in PAL territories. Reversing course from the PSPgo, the PSP-E1000 includes a UMD drive, but does not include network capabilities. Slightly larger and heavier than the PSP-3000, the PSP-E1000 has a charcoal black plastic matte body similar to the slim PS3 redesign. The layout is fairly similar to the original PSP, however it moves the system buttons to a single row below the screen which mimics touch control by being flush with the case itself. To save on costs, the PSP-E1000 removed WiFi as well as stereo sound speakers, opting for no network access and monaural audio. Despite the lack of wireless connectivity, PSN content could still be accessed by connecting the PSP-E1000 to a PC via USB and using Sony's Media Go software, or by connecting to a PS3. The PSP-E100 launched at a cost of €99.99 or £85.
Shown off at E3 2004, the portable was highly anticipated and thought of by many at the time to be superior to the Nintendo DS which was launching around the same time.
However leadIng up to launch whispers of long load times and a short battery life began appearing online. These criticisms were true and it was something that would haunt the system for a majoity of it's life.
Another hamper to the system were third parties who did not fully understand the handheld market. During it's first few years the PSP would often get ports of console games that many felt were illsuited for the portable market. By 2006 and continuing into 2007 many PSP titles were ported to the PS2 presumably due to lower than expected sales of the console.
Rampant Piracy was also an issue for third parties. The PSP was easily hackable and guides on the web on how to bypass the system's security were easily available. Sony attempted through several firmware updates to make hacking the system harder but the wheels were already in motion.
By mid-2008 the one promising handheld's library looked barren with few games being released apart from ports. Sony would try in 2009 to give the system one last push with titles like Rockband Unplugged and Motorstorm Artic Edge but the at that point the damage had already been done.
Despite this the PSP is still remembered for good games such as Lumines and for offering a much needed boost to the Syphon Filter franchise with two well recieved titles. It is probably best known for it's homebrew scene which Sony desperately tried to put a lid on.
Japanese launch titles
North American Launch Titles
European Launch Titles
'Universal Media Discs' are used by the PSP for games and movies. They are small circular discs in a plastic casing. All PSP models except the PSPgo support this format, and various games include firmware updates for the PSP on their disc.
Some movies available on UMD are now included on Blu-Ray releases. The user can download a PSP version of the film from their PS3 to the PSP or PSPgo. Some examples are Godzilla and The Ugly Truth.
Copies of Lumines featured an older firmware update which many users bought and installed to unlock their PSP. At the time this firmware update left the PSP easier to unlock. More recent firmware updates make this harder to do.
The PSP uses Sony Memory Stick Duos to store media. The PSP plays most MP3 and AVC music files. The PSP's Video playback options are far more limitied, however. The PSP cannot play many movie files without using a file converter. The PSP can play movie downloads and rentals from the Playstation Video store. The PSP can also view photos and allows the user to change their wallpaper using their downloaded pictures. Videos, games, and music can all be managed on the PSP either manually, or by using Media GO, which is a program that manages PSP media in a way similar to iTunes.
Digital Comics (discontinued)
Publishers such as DC, Marvel Dark Horse, and many indie publishers, released comics to Playstation Store, which can be downloaded and read using the PSP's comics app. (downloaded separately) However, virtually no manga was released, at least not outside of Japan.
SCEA announced that as of October 30, 2012, the comics store on PSP will be closed: "After this date users will be unable to purchase comic content from the PS Store's Comic Store. Where licenses permit, previously purchased or downloaded content will still be available for download until mid- January 2013. After this date users will no longer be able to re-download any previously purchased content. You can, however back up your content using Media Go."
The original version of the PSP comics reader app had no way to delete comics. However, users can manually download an update for the comics reader. (by highlighting the comics reader from the PSP's cross media bar and then viewing details) This update added the functionality to delete individual comics, allowing users to better manage their memory stick space.
Among the many comics available for purchase in the PSN US store, over 80 free comics are also offered.
Controls for PSP digital comics reader:
- Directional pad left/right - go to next (or previous) panel, word balloon, or other point of interest. Each comic is individually programmed to take you through the pages in order and automatically zooms in/out to the appropriate level for each panel, even zooming in on text/balloons if needed -- Typically, the entire comic can be read this way, using only the directional pad. When you read the end of a page and press right on the directional pad, you are automatically taken to the next page.
- Directional pad up/down - Go to next/previous page of a comic.
- 3D Analog Nub - Scroll around the page. (This can be used to read a comic manually.)
- L/R buttons - Zoom in/out. (ditto)
|CPU||MIPS R4000-based; clocked from 1 to 333 MHz|
|Storage Capacity||PSP1000/2000/3000: Memory Stick Duo and Memory Stick PRO Duo (1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64 or 128 GB)|
PSPgo: Memory Stick M2
|Memory||32 MB (1000 model) or 64 MB (2000, 3000, and PSP Go models)|
|Display||480 × 272 pixels with 16.8 million colors, 16:9 widescreen TFT LCD, 3.8 in (97 mm) (PSP GO), 4.3 in (110 mm) (All other models)|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi (802.11b),IrDA, USB|
|Dimensions||PSP1000: 74 mm (2.9 in) (h) 170 mm (6.7 in) (w) 23 mm (0.91 in) (d)|
PSP2000/3000: 71 mm (2.8 in) (h) 169 mm (6.7 in) (w) 19 mm (0.75 in) (d)
PSPgo: 69 mm (2.7 in) (h) 128 mm (5.0 in) (w) 16.5 mm (0.65 in) (d)
|Weight||PSP1000: 280 grams (9.9 oz)|
PSP2000/3000: 189 grams (6.7 oz)
PSPgo: 158 grams (5.6 oz)