PSP battery life

In a recent post Joystiq posted the comments of Kamalot who makes some good observations on the PSP’s battery life. I will be making up my mind on March 24 when I pickup the system and promptly board a plane for Cubs spring training in Mesa, AZ.

The PSP’s battery is a topic of huge debate. Depending on use, a single charge can last anywhere between 6 hours all the way down to 1.5, depending on which features the handheld utilizes. Why is this?

I seriously ask, should you as a consumer and gamer, have to juggle volume and brightness to eke out a bit more play time? Should game developers be asked to manage the battery consumption or should that be an issue for the developer of the system? Basically, shouldn’t the system, when used at maximum capacity, have a reasonable battery life?

If Sony hadn’t tried to force an optical drive in the PSP, there would be much more room in the system for a larger capacity battery. Load times would be nonexistent. The system would be less fragile and prone to breaking due to mechanical failure. The system wouldn’t have the shuriken UMD ‘feature’. Overall, it would be a much better system. Sony’s reliance on the optical disc has resulted in a worse product than could have otherwise been built.

Why? Why did Sony insist on putting an optical drive in the PSP when it had to compromise on so many other issues? Simple, Sony wants to sell you movies and music on the UMD. They want you to buy a UMD movie for $20. That UMD movie has 1/3 the resolution of a similar priced DVD. That UMD movie can’t be played back on a TV. That UMD movie does not have additional DVD features, menus, subtitles or other cool things you may find on a DVD. Sony makes nearly 100% profit on movies and music.

Sony sacrificed the PSP in order to make money off of movies.

Now, before you start calling names, I’m not laying hate on the PSP. Nice screen. Sleek, shiny case. Good graphics. Nice.

I look at the decisions made by Sony and I see decisions that are absolute trash for gamers but great for lining Sony’s pockets with money. I feel frustrated knowing the PSP could have been so much more if they would simply step up to the plate and decide to knock a home run out of the park instead of walking to first base on the back of movies and music. The missed potential for a system with an 8 hour battery, fully loaded with wi-fi on, makes me weep.

4 hours isn’t enough. 2 hours is a downright embarrassment. As gamers, we should demand more.

Okay, I’ve got my asbestos suit on. Flame away.

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