Spotlight news

Sony will open its own video download service

According to available information, the Sony service will allow movies to be downloaded directly to the computer, from which they can be copied to the MemoryStick card for later viewing on the Sony PlayStation Portable (PSP) gaming device.

Amazon.com and other movie download websites such as Movielink and CinemaNow are in discussions with Sony to use the service which would be available during the first quarter of 2007.

Sony has already tried to expand the use of the PlayStation Portable beyond gaming. It began by offering the ability to play movies using the small discs used by the PSP, although sales have been low and the movies never caught on with most users.

The PlayStation Protable was launched at the end of 2004. At the end of March 2005, sales reached 3 million units, reaching 14 million units in the year. However, sales soon began to decline, and from April 2006 to March 2007 Sony expected sales of 12 million units; figure that has been revised down to 9 million units.

The successful launch of the movie download service could help Sony increase sales of PSP hardware, as well as provide Sony with more weapons to start competing with Apple’s iTunes Store, where iPod users can download. video clips, TV shows, and some movies.