UMD Video: A historical past of movie at the PlayStation Portable

UMD is a proprietary miniature optical disc layout that may hang 1.8GB of information. It got here encased in a plastic defend to offer protection to it from knocks and scratches, and was once best ever used for the PSP. When the PSP was once published right through Sony’s press convention at E3 2004, Kaz Hirai, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America, stressed out that Sony noticed this console as a multimedia platform, and that the UMD would improve full-length motion pictures, branded as UMD Video, in addition to video games.

Trailers for Spider-Man 2 and Final Fantasy XII: Advent Children had been proven taking part in on a PSP unit, and when the USA release date got here, the primary 1 million PSP Value Packs (priced at $250) contained a Spider-Man 2 UMD. Masa Chatani, Chief Technology Officer of Sony Computer Entertainment, expressed nice enthusiasm in media interviews, pronouncing: ‘In the U.S. We have already met with the most important studios. They just about love the PSP and the standard of the UMD.’

Sony introduced an preliminary UMD worth vary of $19.95 to $28.95, with the decrease vary making use of to motion pictures up to now launched on DVD, and the upper vary for brand spanking new motion pictures launching on UMD and DVD on the similar time. Each UMD would include the full-length film encoded in 720×480, the similar as a median DVD, however this could be scaled all the way down to 480×272 when taking part in at the PSP’s display. Due to garage constraints (the common DVD may hang 4.7GB of information to the UMD’s 1.8GB), particular options reminiscent of deleted scenes and ‘making of’ reels would continuously be got rid of.

A Universal Media Disc in its caddy.

Despite those boundaries, early indicators had been encouraging for UMD Video. Within a couple of months the layout may boast 70 to be had titles in the USA and over 500,000 general gross sales. Available titles grew to over 200 inside of part a 12 months, inspired by way of the PSP’s robust gross sales. Two motion pictures launched by way of Sony Pictures handed 100,000 gross sales inside of a month. The first DVD to go that mark, Air Force One, took 9 months. Sony UK leader Ray Maguire mentioned in October 2006 that Sony was once ‘beautiful proud of UMD,’ commenting that it had ‘an out of this world attachment charge’.