We caught up with John Koller, senior product manager for the PSP at Sony’s CES booth this week, to get a quick update on the company’s portable plans. When asked about the success of the recently launched PC version of the PlayStation Store that allows those without a PlayStation 3 to download games, trailers and more to their PSPs, Koller told us that while it was a bit too early for accurate numbers, the company is expecting big things from the service. “We have an opportunity to bring bite-size experiences to the system, ten second, pick up and play content that can be downloaded from the store,” Koller told us, part of an effort to expand the PSPs demographic.
In addition to those short-session downloadable games, plans for more legacy PSP titles are planned. Koller said the company will be re-releasing older PlayStation Portable titles as downloads, ones that “retailers aren’t interested in carrying at this stage, games that we hear a lot of demand from PSP owners—titles like Wipeout, Twisted Metal—gamers who say ‘I want to play this’ but can’t find it at retail anymore.”
Speaking of retail, Koller confirmed that SCEA will be publishing more UMD movies and at a reduced price point. “We definitely understand that releasing a ’70s era romantic comedy at $US 29.99 didn’t appeal to most of the demographic,” he said, telling us that retailers were “bullish” on carrying the UMD movie format at a more sensible price point.
He said that the company wasn’t particularly concerned about the recently confirmed option to copy Blu-ray movie content to a PSP biting into the UMD video market, saying that “Any way we can help get that multimedia content onto the PSP, we’re going to take it.”
We’ll have more from our Q&A with John Koller throughout the week.