Sony to discontinue the PSP Go

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The PSP Go (model PSP-N1000) is being discontinued. Sony today reportedly completed production and shipment of the final units in Japan, meaning that after the remaining stock is sold, the device will be killed off.

The news comes from the Japanese website Impress Watch, which cites an official statement from Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE). The company is apparently promising support, firmware updates, and repairs for the PSP Go, but no further stock.

The Sony PSP Go was released on October 1, 2009 in North America and Europe and on November 1, 2009 in Japan. Although its design is significantly different from other PSPs, it was never intended to replace the PSP 3000, which Sony says it will continue to manufacture, sell, and support. The device was largely considered a failure, though Sony said it was an experiment that paid off in knowledge.

Unlike previous PSP models, the PSP Go does not feature a UMD drive, but instead has 16GB of internal flash memory to store games, video, pictures, and other media. This can be expanded by up to 32GB with the use of a Memory Stick Micro flash card. Also unlike previous PSP models, the PSP Go's rechargeable battery is not removable or replaceable by the user. The unit is 43 percent lighter and 56 percent smaller than the original PSP-1000, and 16 percent lighter and 35 percent smaller than the PSP-3000. It has a 3.8" 480 272 LCD (compared to the larger 4.3" 480 272 pixel LCD on previous PSP models), which slides up to reveal the main controls.

While Sony will continue pushing the PSP 3000, the death of the PSP Go shows it is slowly shifting its focus to the Next Generation Portable (NGP). The device is due for initial release during the fourth quarter of 2011.

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