Almost 10 years after its launch, the PlayStation Store ends service for the PSP in various markets beginning September 15, 2014. IGN‘s Cassidee Moser is reporting that the PlayStation Store will no longer be accessible for users of the PlayStation Portable in Europe, Oceania, Asia and parts of Africa beginning next week.
The PlayStation Store originally debuted on the PSP on October 15, 2008 with PSP System Software 5.0, which brought the ability to purchase digital games to the handheld platform. Sony later released the PSP Go in late 2009 as a digital distribution only platform, doing away with the physical UMD drive. The PSP Go did not find commercial success as many third party publishers did not elect to publish their games on the digital platform.
Gamers who may find themselves wishing to purchase some PS One Classics or games for the aging PSP before Sony turns off the store completely will be able to purchase and download games using the Sony Entertainment Network Online Store. Owners will also still be able to access the list of their already purchased games from the Account section of their PSP’s XMB. IGN‘s story did not specify if games purchased for the PSP would still be available via the PlayStation Store on the PlayStation 3.
Even though the PlayStation Store will be ending service for the PSP overseas, North American owners of the PSP will still be able to access the storefront according to Sony. Sony will continue to “evaluate market trends” in order to follow the best course of action for other regions.
Sony has been hedging their bets on the PSP’s successor, the PS Vita as a gaming device built around digital distribution. The PS Vita library has been steadily increasing in size with smaller titles and indie-studio contributions throughout the normally barren summer release schedule. Games like Metrico,Fez, and Counter Spy have been top sellers on the PS Vita. Even with a variety of PSP games playable on the PS Vita, the move to the PS Vita is where Sony’s focus is and maintaining an aging platform just doesn’t make sense from a financial standpoint.
The news is also not surprising when you consider the announcement earlier this year at The Verge that Sony would no longer be shipping any PSP’s in Japan, with shipping ending to Europe, North and Latin America later in the year.
With the PSP seeing support ending for the PlayStation Store on September 15 for parts of the world, gamers may want to poke around in the PlayStation store before before being limited to browsing on the PC or PS3 interface.
Image Source | Sony