[UPDATE] Pachter: Sony is ripping off consumers with PSP Go

UPDATE:

Pachter has since issued an apology for what he describes as a 'poor choice of words' regarding his comments over the price point of PSP Go:

"I sincerely regret the choice of words in my response to [GameTrailers TV editor and presenter] Geoff Keighley's question in last week's Bonus Round, where I said that Sony is "ripping off" the consumer by pricing the PSP Go at USD 249.99," he told IndustryGamers.

"I made a poor choice of words, and I do not think that Sony is doing anything nefarious in choosing their pricing strategy.

"The company has the right to price its products at a point that they think is competitive, and has no obligation to sell products at lower than a competitive price,"

ORIGINAL ARTICLE:

Wedbush Morgan Securities analyst Michael Pachter has accused Sony of deliberately ripping off punters by slapping a hefty $249 price tag on its newly announced PSP Go in North America.

"I'm sorry to say it, I don't want to get bad fan mail from the Sony fanboys, but Sony is ripping off the consumer until they sell a couple of million," Pachter told GameTrailers.com.

The analyst observed that the PSP-3000 is more expensive to manufacture than the PSP Go, the latter of which supports only digital-based content as opposed to the 3000’s UMD format.

"Disc assembly for UMD costs more than 16GB of Flash does," he said. "So this new device doesn't cost them as much to make as the PSP-3000 and they've jacked the price up USD 80. And if consumers don't buy it then the price is going to come down. They're making a lot more money on the PSP Go than the PSP-3000."

Pachter went on to outline the growth in digital distribution within the games industry, which is slowly replacing the need for physical media. "PSP Go is a game changer for digital delivery and yet they're still going to support the PSP-3000, they've got to keep the retailers happy,” he said.

"This year's show is 'packaged goods are going away'. Half of all gaming purchases ten years from now are going to be digital. You can see it coming for the first time ever, the console manufacturers are behind it.”

PSP Go is due for release in October 2009.

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