PSP2 Will Ditch The UMD, May Rival Xbox 360 In Horsepower

The PlayStation Portable 2, rumoured to have dual analogue sticks, a bigger screen and touch controls, will also rival the Xbox 360 in processing power and ditch the UMD format, sources tell Kotaku.

Earlier this week multiple sources detailed meetings with Sony during the Tokyo Game Show about the long-rumoured PSP2.

In those meetings about the portable, we were told, the device was shown to have a touch panel on the back of the system what looked like a mouse trackpad. The PSP2 also had dual analogue sticks and a larger display which Sony touted as being "HD".

While the device was shown in two form-factors, one that mimicked the traditional PSP and one that mimicked the PSPGo, Sony told attendees that they have not yet settled on the final design for the system.

Since breaking the news earlier this week, a few more details have shaken loose about the device, which our sources have verified.

One of the key ones is that the PSP2 will not have a UMD drive. The UMD (Universal Media Disc) was launched in 2004 for use in the PSP. Initially, the format was used for movies, but slow sales of UMD films lead to studios dropping support for the format.

Sony's PSPgo is UMD-free version of the PSP, and sources tell Kotaku that the PSP2 will follow in the footsteps of that portable. Games will be stored on a Memory Stick, according to one source. Though we've also been told that Sony is still puzzling out what the final non-UMD storage solution will be for the PSP2.

We've also learned that the PSP2 will be a much more powerful gaming device with twice the RAM of the Xbox 360.

While we don't yet know all of the portable's system specifications, we have been told that the PSP2 will feature 1GB of RAM. That's compared to the 64MB of RAM the PSPGo and PSP 3000 have. Both of those portables use a MIPS R4000 CPU clocked at up to 333MHz. By comparison the Xbox 360 has 512MB of Ram and runs a 3.2GHz CPU.

The specs for the Nintendo 3DS, which will be launching in February and March next year, haven't yet been officially detailed, though we've heard it will be as powerful as the Nintendo Wii which features 64MB of RAM and a special processor clocked at 729MHz.

It's starting to sound like someone at Sony is listening to the murmuring about the PlayStation Portable and doing something to fix the issues some have with it. Dual analogue sticks. No UMD. A bigger screen. More powerful tech. Touch controls. We're not hearing a single thing we don't like so far.


    No UMD? Thats fixing an issue? Every PSP owner out there has been whinging that the UMD drive was taken away..

    And is Sony going to be that stupid to release a PSP phone and PSP2? Possibly splitting there own market base, or hurting early developers on either system?

    Well.. guess we will see what happens soon.

      I've hated the UMD format from day one. Load times and the 'minor' issues of the UMD cases seperating making games unplayable! I was very happy to ditch the UMD and move to a PSPGo.

      PSP phone uses android so it's hardly splitting the userbase

      and if they make them correctly it'd kinda be like the iphone and the ipad theres

      psp phone games that play on both and PSP2 games that are tied to it

      getting rid of the UMD is the right move but they need something as download only isn't productive to the userbase. some people still have terribad connections.

      the issue with the GO atm is that the old games were rendered useless, since you had to rebuy for a digi copy, and i believe some were only released in one foramt or the other

    It will be intresting to see how 'portable' this device will be...

    If they are making it like the PSPgo then it's going to crash and burn again.

    I''m sorry "team kotaku", but it doesn't seem like sony are really listening at all... I mean, adding 2 analogue sticks and upping the power isn't really 'listening' so much as it's just adding what by all logic should have been done instead of the Go.

    Plus, what's the price point for this thing going to be? I bet it won't come cheap at all.

    With it being DD only, it'll still fail next to apple's products which offer more functionality and cheaper games. Sure the PSP2 games may be shinyer, but sony will have complete control over the market making cheap games a rarity, hindering their own sales.

    I love my psp3000, but all sony have been doing with EVERYTHING they have been saying since the go is just adding to my apathy for this new machine.

    The PSP needs to be improved on, but c'mon guys - get more creative like you always used to. Sony used to be the pioneers of the industry, now they are quickly becoming the followers...

      There is no mention of the machine being DD only? and likely there will be some form of storage media.

      Anyway... with the system rumoured to be larger than the original PSP, you would think they could sneak in a UMD somewhere.

    Hardware and features sound like they'll be impressive, if a little bit unwieldy (touchpad on the back?). Normally I yearn for physical media, but considering it's a handheld I can make an exception; if the game price reflects that and they aren't 10gb each.

    Early days, but Sony looks like they're on a winner.

    The article title is laughable.
    Just because it has twice the ram dosnt mean much at all, what counts is clock speeds and latency/access times.
    Also, how can a portable devices cpu rival a 3.2GHz tri core cpu?
    Not to mention the difference between GPU and GRAM of the devices.
    Its a portable device, it has to manage heat output and power consumption as well as cost effectiveness, it cant have all high end components and remain at a price people can afford.
    Please revise the article title :D

      it says *may* rival

      Remind yourself how old the 360 is, and what new technology offers, and it doesn't seem like such an outlandish statement. I don't believe it will equal the 360, but it's not impossible.

      Look at the PS3's cell broadband engine and you'll see Sony is capable of doing some crazy things with processors. The 360's triple core processor was mind blowing when it came out, but it's definitely showing it's age.

        yeah theres plenty of tech higher than a tri-core nowadays.

        plus theres a distinct advantage in not having to scale for multiple resolution TV's

        i wouldn't be concerned with heat id be more concerned with battery life

    So I take it this is gonna be an expensive handheld console? I mean it's gonna be powerful as or more than the xbox 360. And ditching the UMD... man seriously.. I like my UMD's but if the price of this future PSP isn't that bad then I'd give buying games online for a PSP a go. And on a the other hand this PSPhone... I wonder how it's gonna work out.

    No UMD? that sounds great, I download my games off steam after I've purchased them so I'd be happier to download games I've purchased and keep them on a memory stick rather than carry around lots of UMDs

    The iphone isnt even competition for the PSP when it comes to games. The iphone games are terrible. Even AAA rating games like Assasins Creed are unplayable due to the touch controls.

    The PSP2 will fail if you can only get games via download. Downloadable games have no value to me. Thats why i pirate them. I have never purchased one game or app for my iphone.

    I have probably 30 PSP UMD's i copy the games to memory stick for portability. But these games have value, can be resold, are collectable and can become valuable (may take a while).

    A downloadable game holds no value to me.

    Please don't mimic the old PSP design. I would like something that could fit in my pocket. Or preferably not a long-ass rectangle. This machine is gonna be killer. Ditch UMD's for sure, they are terrible. As for the Go design, I like it.

    I wonder if there'll be a way to convert existing psp games to work on it, if they're UMDs, without forking out for digital copies. It'd be a shame if it becomes like the ps2-ps3 debacle.

      Or even the PSP-Phat/PSP-Go debacle. That certainly burned a lot of bridges.

        They failed to provide this service with the go, I doubt they will bother with 2.

    If there's no disc format, then the PSP2 will be doomed. Digital distribution is a bad move.. Didn't they not learn with the PSP Go?

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