Foster City, Calif. — After two years on the market the Sony PlayStationPortable (PSP) is getting a $30 price reduction, bringing the cost of the Core Pack to a suggested $169.
Sony also announced it added Daxter, and Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror to its PSP "Greatest Hits" collection.
Sony claims sales of the PSP are on the upswing, climbing to nearly 25 million units worldwide, compared with shipments of 15 million in 2005. It said more than 1 million new PSPs sold in December in North America, and software shipments for 2006 tallied at 90 million units.
“In particular, we have recently seen a steady rise in the number of teens adopting PSP as their primary handheld entertainment system, and we expect the new price will accelerate that trend," said Jack Tretton, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA).
Sony expects increased growth this year due to new software releases from franchises including God of War, Ratchet & Clank, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs and Syphon Filter.
IDC analyst Billy Pidgeon noted, “The PSP hasn’t been moving as rapidly as the retailers would like to see,” adding, “the price drop will help.”
By contrast, the Nintendo DS platform has been selling briskly to the point of short supply. Pidgeon added, however, that the PSP “is the first handheld system [other than Nintendo’s] that’s been able to sustain a respectable installed base. Every other competitor to Nintendo has lost money and failed to crack the market.”
IDC estimates 2006 North American sales through retailers at 4.3 million units for the Nintendo DS, or $550 million and 3.6 million PSPs at $804 million. The Nintendo DS Lite sells at $129.