Sony offers explanation for not bringing UMD Passport program to US

Some of you may have heard of Sony’s plan to allow Japanese gamers to pay a small fee to acquire downloadable copies of some of their UMD games for their Vita. You may have also heard that Sony doesn’t plan to give U.S. gamers that same luxury. Well, now Sony has explained their stance on the issue. It may not help us feel better, but it might help us understand why.

In a recent interview with Wired, SCE worldwide studios president Shuhei Yoshida explained why Sony is choosing to exclude the U.S. from being able to download digital copies of their UMD games. His first explanation is tied to the high popularity of PSP games in Japan:

“When you look at the release schedule of new titles there are still lots of PSP games being released in Japan and being announced for release,” Yoshida said. “Lots of people who are interested in trying Vita are also interested in playing PSP games that they might purchase before Vita comes out, and will not necessarily choose the digital version.”

Along with this, Yoshida also said that a main proponent of this move by Sony is the inexpensiveness of games in the U.S. and Europe, compared to Japan.

“[…]PSP games in Japan are sold at a much higher price, so people see the value in spending the $5 to $10 to get the digital copy,” he said. “But when the games are already sold at a lower price in the U.S. we see less value in introducing that kind of system.”

Though this is a seemingly logical stance on Sony’s part, it is also leaving U.S. PSP owners out in the cold. While it may not be of the highest demand here, it would still be greatly appreciated and used by fans, especially those with large UMD libraries upgrading to the PS Vita.

[Source: Shack News]