PSP2 Will Ditch the UMD, May Rival Xbox 360 In HorsepowerS

The Playstation Portable 2, rumored to have dual analog sticks, a bigger screen and touch controls, will also rival the Xbox 360 in processing power and ditch the UMD format, sources tell Kotaku.

Earlier this week multiple sources detailed meetings with Sony during the Tokyo Game Show about the long-rumored PSP2.

In those meetings about the portable, we were told, the device was shown to have a touch panel on the back of the system what looked like a mouse trackpad. The PSP2 also had dual analog sticks and a larger display which Sony touted as being "HD."

While the device was shown in two form-factors, one that looked like the PSPgo (seen above) and one that looked like the PSP, Sony told attendees that they have not yet settled on the final design for the system.

Since breaking the news earlier this week, a few more details have shaken loose about the device, which our sources have verified.

One of the key ones is that the PSP2 will not have a UMD drive. The UMD (Universal Media Disc) was launched in 2004 for use in the PSP. Initially, the format was used for movies, but slow sales of UMD films lead to studios dropping support for the format.

Sony's PSPgo is UMD-free version of the PSP, and sources tell Kotaku that the PSP2 will follow in the footsteps of that portable. Games will be stored on a Memory Stick, according to one source. Though we've also been told that Sony is still puzzling out what the final non-UMD storage solution will be for the PSP2.

We've also learned that the PSP2 will be a much more powerful gaming device with twice the RAM of the Xbox 360.

While we don't yet know all of the portable's system specifications, we have been told that the PSP2 will feature 1 GB of RAM. That's compared to the 64 MB of RAM the PSPgo and PSP 3000 have. Both of those portables use a MIPS R4000 CPU clocked at up to 333 MHz. By comparison the Xbox 360 has 512 MB of RAM and runs a 3.2 GHZ CPU.

The specs for the yet-to-be-released Nintendo 3DS haven't been officially detailed but we've heard it will be as powerful as the Nintendo Wii which features 64 MB of RAM, and a special processor clocked at 729 MHz.

It's starting to sound like someone at Sony is listening to the murmuring about the Playstation Portable and doing something to fix the issues some have with it. Dual analog sticks. No UMD. A bigger screen. More powerful tech. Touch controls. We're not hearing a single thing we don't like so far.