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Sony's PSP celebrates 5th birthday in West

Handheld console passes 17 million units in the US, but "best is yet to come" says Dille

Sony's PlayStation Portable handheld has now sold 17 million units in the US as the company celebrates the fifth anniversary of its launch in the Western markets.

The console was launched on March 24, 2005 in the North America and a day later in Europe, with over 520 titles having been released since that time on UMD and more than 300 titles via the PlayStation Network.

But, according to Sony Computer Entertainment America senior VP of marketing, Peter Dille, the "best is yet to come".

"Five years ago, PlayStation had yet to break into the portable market," he said Peter Dille. "Today, the PSP system is a well-established handheld platform that continuously redefines portable entertainment with quality that's unparalleled.

"As PSP celebrates its fifth anniversary, the best is yet to come. We're very excited about the vibrant 2010 line-up and are committed to continuing to offer entertainment experiences and immersive gameplay only possible on the PlayStation platform."

The platform has spawned four versions of hardware since the PSP-1000 launched, followed by the PSP-2000 in 2007 (33 per cent lighter than the original), the PSP-3000 in 2008 (with enhanced LCD screen) and the PSPgo last year (which discarded the UMD drive in favour of a completely digital solution).

"PlayStation has repeatedly made bold decisions through the introduction of technology that continues to redefine the entertainment landscape, whether it be in the living room or on-the-go," said Jesse Divnich, VP of Analyst Services at EEDAR. "Over the last five years, the PSP system has always reflected Sony's ability to understand and meet the needs of modern consumers by providing a convergent device that offers high-quality gaming, photo, movie, and audio support."

While the console celebrates five years in the Western markets, the device was originally launched in Japan a little earlier, in December 2004, and has now sold over 14 million units in that territory, according to Media Create.

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