Don McCabe, the managing director of Chips, the UK’s largest independent games chain, believes the PSP Go will “fail miserably”.
McCabe told GI.biz, “My own personal opinion is that it’s a no-go. I’ve been to a number of presentations to see if there’s anything there and I don’t feel it’ll go anywhere to be honest.
“I’m 99.9 per cent sure it’s going to fail miserably, in which case it’s going to put back other potential people coming into that digital space.”
McCabe continued, “I heard from someone at Sony saying ‘this steps our authority on the digital space and signals our intent,’ and actually what I think is that they’ll scare the crap out of anyone else who tries to follow.”
This, of course, is exactly what retailers want to happen. If the download-only handheld truly is the first step in a industry-wide move towards digital distribution then Chips and his high-street chums are in trouble, with their trade-ins and boxed copy sales under threat of extinction.
Perhaps unsurprisingly then, McCabe is outwardly doubtful that a download-only retail model is viable at all. Casting aspersions over Apple’s apparent success in digital downloads, McCabe continued, “…well, yeah but out of two billion downloads I’d say maybe 70 per cent of those have been free. And of the ones that they’ve paid for they’ll have paid pennies for.”
“Apple’s a tremendous success story for Apple, it’s not a tremendous success story for anybody else.”
“It’s going to come [digital distribution], no matter what, but a very small amount of people are actually going to go on to make any money out of it. One or two will make serious money and they’ll be held up as ‘you too can do this’. Whenever you see anyone producing fantastic figures, just ask them how much they actually made from it.”