PSP Not a Sellout in US
A mixed response received from the general consumer...
Sony's PSP handheld video game system launched last week in North America with what seemed like remarkable success. Midnight launch parties followed by hordes of gamers lined up at stores gave the impression of a complete unit sellout. But while many retailers did sell their entire stock, some stores were left in shock at the lack of interest the general consumer was showing towards the handheld.
The price of the unit may have been the biggest contributor to this dampened excitement. Retailing at $250, the PSP is $100 more expensive than Nintendo's latest handheld, the DS. Although this price could be justified by the number of accessory items contained along with the PSP in this value pack, the average consumer just wasn't prepared to drop such a large sum of money on a handheld device.
Conversely, a sales representative of GameStop, the largest game retailer in the country, wasn't especially surprised at all that non-gaming retailers like Target, Best Buy, etc. didn't sell out of the handheld.
"That's not an impulse purchase," he said. "The people who wanted to get this thing were teed up to get it and had the money. I would expect, though, as the early adopters now have them and are showing them off and people are seeing it, that it will have traction."